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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1861, 

By the G-bnkral Fbotbbtant Episcopal Suvdat School 
Union and Ohurch Book Societt, 

In the Olerk's Office of the District Court of the United 
States for the Southern District of Nkw-York. 

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"Of the exquisite grace and beauty of Berkeley's diction, 
no man accustomed to English composition need to be in- 
formed. His works are, beyond dispute, the finest models 
of philosophical style since Cicero. Perhaps they surpass 
those of the orator in the wonderful art by which the fullest 
light is thrown on the most minute and evanescent parts of 
the most subtile of human conceptions."— /Sir James Mackin-^ 

" So much understanding, so much knowledge, so much in- 
nocence, and such humility, I did not think had been the por- 
tion of any but angels, till I saw this gentleman." — Atterbury. 

" When Shaftesbury, in phrases of studied eloquence, was 
adyocating a modified Platonic system, and Bishop Sherlock 
represented the eloquence of the Church ; when Swift's pun- 
gent satire ruled In politics, and Pope's finished couplets were 
the exemplars of poetry ; when Sir Robert Walpole's ministry 
and Queen Caroline's levees were the civic and social features 
of the day, there moved in the circles of literature, of state, 
and of religious fellowship, one of those men to whom, by 
virtue of their guileless spirit and ingenuous minds, their 
sweet repose of character, gentle manners, and speculative 
tendency, we instinctively give the name of philosophers." — 
7^uikerman'*^ Biographical Mssays. 


Although the writer of this volame claims little credit 
to himself on the score of originality, he can safely say 
that he has taken great pains to collect materials from the 
best authorities, and to arrange them as well as he could. 
'* Anderson's History of the Colonial Church," and an able 
article in the '^ British Quarterly Beview," have been 
largely drawn upon. 

Some may be disposed to think that the volume is 
rather above the standard for young readers, but it is 
believed that few children of fourteen or fifteen will find 
it too dry or abstruse. If a child is obliged to call upon 
a parent or teacher to explain some word or reference, 
neither party will be the loser. 

There are hundreds of grown people who have not 
time for extensive reading (this single volume contains 
the gleanings from a whole wheel-barrow load of books), 
and the writer is glad to be assured that many of this 
class are enabled, through the pages of these brief biog- 
raphies, to form the acquaintance of the wise and the 
good. " Books that you may carry to the fire (says the 
great Dr. Johnson), and hold readily in your hand, are 
the most useful after all. A man will often look at them, 
and be tempted to go on, when he would be frightened at 
books of a larger size, and of a more erudite appear- 

"In almost every age and country there have been found a 
few men eminently distinguished for the purity of their hearts 
and the benevolence and integrity of their conduct. They rose 
in virtue above their contemporaries like the oak of the forest 
above the saplings beneath it. They are the moral ornaments 
and glory of their race, and the record of their lives serves as a 
relief to the otherwise dark picture presented by the history 
of our species. To the end of time their example will con- 
tinue to exert an influence, exciting mankind to constant pro- 
gress in everything which is noble and good. Among this class 
of men few deserve a higher place than Bishop Berkeley."— 
Church Review. 

** The arrival in America of the Eev. Mr. Greorge Berkeley, 
then Dean of Derry, afterwards Bishop of Cloyne, deserves to 
be noticed in the literary history of America, not only as a re- 
markable event, but also as one which had some influence on 
the progress of literature, particularly in Rhode Island and 
Oonnecticut." — Samuel Miller^ a Retrospect of tffie Eighteenth 


" The Uona" at New Haven— Smibert's celebrated picture- 
Dean Berkeley in his official robes— The little Irish boy— An- 
cestry—The old homestead- Collector of Belfast— William's 
Reception—" G-od save the Protestant king !"— Belfast in 
prosperity — Q-reat excitements — ^King James plays the des- 
pot — Things which were going on in America — ^What George 
Berkeley's parents little suspected — The future philosopher 
at Kilkenny school — A famous name cut on a desk — Early 
advantages improved 16 


Young Berkeley enters Trinity College, Dublin— Certain poli- 
tical events referred to — The College as it used to be. King 
James' visit to Dublin — ^A great display of blankets and 
coverlets— The tide changes— Trinity College suffers a re- 
verse of fortune — Dr. St. Q-eorge Ashe, and his two distin- 
guished pupils — Mr. Berkeley obtains a Fellowship — Admit- 
ted to Holy Orders — Carefer as an author begun — ^Twelve 
years in retirement and study — Whigs and Tories — Mr. 
Berkeley's political opinions — Locke, and metaphysical 
studies — A privilege allowed of which some will probably 
avail themselves 26 

Years full of interest, in more than one point of view — Changes 
and chances in the political world — An unfortunate remedy 
proposed— The penal code — Publication of the new theory of 
vision — ^Locke's germ developed into a plausible theory — Two 
important discoveries— Other metaphysical works — Berke- 
ley's design not fully accomplished in the refutation of infi- 
delity— Close of his academical career 37 


Personal appearance of our hero— Warm Irish temperament- 
No stranger to the literary world— Swift's influence extended 
in his behalf— Chaplain to the Earl of Peterborough— Setting 
out for Sicily— Ghen. Oglethorpe— The fidgety soldier makes 
a sudden start— Parisian sights — Crossing Mount Cenis in 
open chairs— Three weeks at G-eneva— The Earl forgets his 
chaplain— The English clergyman a*t Leghorn- Basil Ken- 
nett and his trying position— The Koman Catholics regard 
him as a saint — Mr. Berkeley's curious adventure- Blessing 
the houses, to keep off rats and vermin 47 

Important political events in England— Whigs and Tories at 
war — Death of Queen Anne— End of the Stuart dynasty — 
How G-eorge the First became King of England— His portrait 
drawn — Lord Peterborough and his chaplain return home- 
Hopes of advancement blasted— Severe illness — A jocular let- 
ter from Dr. Arbuthnot — George's first Parliament— Im- 
peachment of some of Queen Anne's ministers— Tumultuous 
gatherings and riots— Meeting-houses torn down— Plots of 
the Jacobites— Mr. Berkeley packs his trunk for another 
journey 57 

A great treat— The two travellers cross into France — Mr. 
Berkeley hunts up a celebrated philosopher — Malebranche 
is introduced to our readers — The sick man in his cell— An 
unfortunate discussion — ^Four years abroad — Careful exami- 
nation of the island of Sicily-Journals lost — Two interesting 
letters — The island of Inarime— Mons Apomeus — Life at 
Naples — ^Mount Vesuvius — A hideous bellowing— Torrent of 
liquid fire— Pillar of black smoke— Quietness restored. . . 66 

A treatise on motion— How much its speculations are worth- 
Once more in London— Changes among old friends— The 
South Sea Bubble— Law, the Scotch Adventurer- Ingrati- 
ates himself with the French king— Magnificent schemes- 
South Sea Company— Stock-jobbing on a large scale— Golden 
visions— The English nation run mad— What wise ones did 


-with their stock— The babble bunts— Oonsequences thereof 
—Mr. Berkeley becomes more practical than common— An 
essay for the good of his country— A few passages not oyer 
complimentary .' 84 

Making friends — His taste for architecture leads to prefer- 
ment — G-oes to Ireland as the Duke of O-raf ton's chaplain — 
Renews his intimacy with Swift — Condition of Ireland— 
Drapier's Letters — ^Marriage of Stella — '* Vanessa's bower" — 
How Berkeley's fortune was increased — Unpopularity of 
King Greorge's government — The Pretender attempts to seize 
the crown — Bishop Atterbury's conspiracies — His arrest and 
condemnation — Troublesome till the end — His farewell letter 
to Pope — Theological controversies — Giving ourselves unto 
prayer 99 

Mr. Berkeley appears in his character of a Christian philan- 
thropist— Condition of the British possessions in North Ame- 
rica—A crippled Church— Efforts for better things— Difficul- 
ties to be anticipated— Mr. Berkeley made a Dean — An im- 
portant scheme developed — The Summer Islands, and the 
College of St. Paul's — ^Why this location was chosen — Shake- 
speare's '* vext Bermoothes" — The living machinery for the 
work — Objections answered — " Westward the star of empire 
takes its way." 112 


The most difficult part of the work — Characteristic letter from 
Dean Swift— The wrong road to royal favor — "What Boling- 
broke thought of the missionary— Another channel attempt- 
ed— Si>eedlng " the pious undertaking" — Death of King 
G-eorge the First — Accession of his promising son — Walpole 
continued in office — "Boetry and Bainting" — ^The genius of 
the people shines forth in spite of the indifference of the king 
.—Letters to Mr. Prior— Light ahead— All obstacles overconw 
—Marriage— Departure for America 134 

Going on in advance of the voyagers — Fenimore Cooper's 
description of Newport Harbor— First settlement— Three 


causes oi the prosperity of Newport— Quakers and Jewi^« 
Mary Dyre— Trinity church built-^ames Honeyman, the 
pastor— The old clock— Early planting of the Ohurch in 
Rhode Island— Mr. Honeyman's labors— An item of news 
from an old paper— The long yoyage ended— An interesting 
incident, if true— A delightful surprise to the new comers. 162 


The Dean's first impressions of America— His own letters- 
Remarks on the climate of New England— Description of- 
the island— Newport as it then was— Sharpness of winter- 
Uncertainty of his position — Purchase of a farm — ^Whitehall 
—Mr. Bamaby's description of it—" The Montpelier of Ame- 
rica" — Q-orgeous sunsets— Effects of the Q-ulf stream—Nar- 
raganset ponies— Quaker broad-brims at church— Siberian 
Tartars— Dean Berkeley's sermons— Presents an organ to 
Trinity church—*' Though dead, yet speaking." 165 

Our maignation aroused at the treatment which Dean Berke> 
ley receives— His wonderful patience— Nothing heard of the 
promised fund for the college— Reports which were un- 
founded— Extravagancies of religious fanaticism in Rhode 
Island — Living without the sacraments — Nothing but dis- 
appointment to be looked for— Bishop G-ibson obtains a defi- 
nite reply from Walpole— The land in St. Christopher's sold 
—A glorious project comes to an untimely end 170 

Interesting particulars about Dr. Johnson — Early taste for 
study — Enters Yale College— A Tutor at twenty — ^Becomes a 
Congregational preacher— An addition to the library of Yale 
College, which brings about some important results — Mr. 
Johnson's first acquaintance with the Prayer-book— Further 
investigations convince him of the truth of Episcopacy- 
Worldly prospects sacrificed — Goes to England for ordina- 
tion-Takes charge of the church at Stratford— One of the 
first to welcome Dean Berkeley to Americar— " The minute 
philosopher"- A good word spoken for Yale College, which 
secures for it land and books— Dr. Johnson's career briefly 
traced to the end 189 



Publication of Alciphron— Bolingbroke and Uoadlej assail it- 
Dean Berkeley renews his acquaintance with Ctueen Oaro- 
line— The metaphysical circle around her tea-table— Some- 
thing more concerning her Majes^— Admiration for Butler's 
Analogy — Bishop Hoadley's twistings and turnings in the 
pursuit of high position — His ambitious attempts successful 
—Neglect of sacred duties— Br. Samuel Clarke' and his he- 
retical views — A degradation which the Church narrowly 
escaped— Bishop Sherlock— Brief outline of his career— Our 
introductions close 209 


Something to Q,ueen Caroline's credit— Bishop Butler, author 
of the Analogy — Dr. Berkeley becomes Bishop of Cloyne— 
The curious way in which English Bishops are chosen- 
Brief account of the Church in Ireland— A strange mistake 
about St. Patrick— Charlotte Elizabeth's letters quoted— 
Much information in a note — The Komanists have a hard 
question to settle — ^How the Irish were brought under the 
dominion of the Pope— The Church of Ireland after the Re- 
formation—The reyised Prayer-book adopted— Bishop Ber- 
keley's real position 220 

Cloyne now, and what it was a hundred and thirty years ago 
—The current of life flowing smoothly— A difficult position, 
but one of usefulness and happiness — Kindly intercourse 
with Roman Catholics— Controversy with the Mathemati- 
.cians — The occasion which started it— Publication of the 
" Analyst"— The Blasters— Failure of the potatoe crop- 
Treatise on Tar Water- Maxims concerning patriotism- 
Two letters to Smlbert 237 

The translation of Bishops— A noble resolution nobly kept—A 
great mind stooping to lowly duties— Going back to Ameri- 
can aflairs— Refunding the money subscribed for the Ber- 
muda scheme— Interesting letter— List of useful books to be 
sent to Harvard College— Sermon at the Anniversary meet- 
ing of 1782— Account of the New England jiUssionaries— The 


"Brethren of the Separation"— Interest in American Col- 
leges — ^Bishop Berkeley's sympathy for the Indians and Ne- 
groes of Rhode Island 251 


Mrs. Berkeley — Her taste for painting — She sends a specimen 
of her skill to Mr. Prior — The fine arts encouraged in Imo- 
killy — "Almost shaken to pieces" — Dean Gervais, a speci- 
men of self-indulgent clergymen — Tar and honey — Musical 
instruments — Sir Robert Walpole in trouble — Seeks happi- 
ness in retirement — ]\Jore about the line arts — Death of Mr. 
Prior — His monument — ^Prince Charles makes a stir in Scot* 
land — The Emerald Isle has its own troubles — The insurrec- 
tion of the rapparees 264 


Bishop Berkeley's letters to his friend Dr. Johnson — The Nar 
raganset ponies give place to stage coaches— Prosperity of 
Yale in 1749— The uneducated people of Ireland — Hints in 
regard to a new college in America — Tar water correspon- 
dence — Effects of a good sermon — Dr. Johnson's two sons — 
Something about each of them — Mr. Hutchinson's theories — 
Concluding letter — Learning continuing to flourish at New 
Hayen — A charitable wish from a Christian heart 275 


The virtues of tar water fail — Dr. Berkeley's disinterested 
proposal — One of the good things that King George said- 
Why Oxford was chosen as a future home — Leave-taking, 
and last acts of kindness — ^Wearisome journey in a horse lit- 
ter — Befitting welcome to a good and great man— A sudden 
summons — ^Funeral — ^Monument and inscrix)tion — Criticism 
of the Bishop's writings— His family— Conclusion 280 





"The lions" at New Haven — Smibert's celebrated 
picture — Dean Berkeley in his official robes. — ^The 
little Irish boy — Ancestry — The old homestead— Col- 
lector of Bel&st.— William's reception.— " God Save 
the Protestant King 1" — Belfast in prosperity — Great 
excitements — King James plays the despot — Things 
which were going on in America— What Qeorge 
Berkeley's parents little suspected — The future phil- 
osopher at Kilkenny school — A ^rnous name cut on a 
desk. — Early advantages improved. 

OME years ago, when ^the writer paid his 
first visit to New Haven, . the reverend 
brother beneath whose hospitable roof he 
sojourned, went with him to visit the various 
places of interest about that beautiful city. 

The graves of the Regicides, the old church, 
with its walls covered with graceful festoons 
of green, where the venerable Dr. Croswell 


then officiated, and the Library of Yale 
College, were visited in turn, and it was while 
examining the treasures of the college that 
our eyes were attracted by the picture of 
Dean Berkeley, painted by Smibert.* The 
principal figure is that c f the Dean himself, 
resting his hand on a copy of Plato, his 
favorite author, and he appears to be dicta- 
ting to Sir James Dalton, who is acting as his 
amanuensis. The lady with a child is Mrs. 
Berkeley, and the other lady is supposed to 
be Miss Hancock, who accompanied them to 
America. The gentleman standing behind 
the ladies is Mr. James. There are two 
other figures in the picture ; Mr. John Moffat, 
and the artist himself. 

Tradition says that the outline was sketched 
on the voyage from Europe, and Smibert pro- 

•Smibert had risen to distinction from the humble 
I)Osition of a house painter, and he was the first educated 
artist who visited America. An engraving of Dean 
Berkeley was made from the picture described above, by 
Hinman, which appeared in the " Yale Literary Maga< 
zine" for January. 1846 


bably finislied his work while the Dean lived 
at Newport, Rhode Island, about the yeai 

While gazing upon the benevolent features 
of the good man whose name is so intimately 
associated with the early history of the Church 
on this continent, we called to mind his zeal- 
ous efforts for the propagation of the gospel ; 
but we little thought that we should ever ven- 
ture to act as his biographer. And yet, this 
is the pleasing office in which we are now to 
be engaged. 

George Bebkeley was born at Kilerim, 
near Thomastown, in the County of Kilkenny, 
Ireland, on the 12th of March, 1684. He 
was a son of William Berkeley, an English 
gentleman, who, having suffered severely for 
his loyalty to King Charles the First, went 
over to Ireland, after the Restoration, and 
was appointed to the collectorship of Belfast. 

The paternal grandfather of our hero 
accompanied to Ireland his kinsman. Lord 
Berkeley, of Stratton, who held the office of 


Lord Lieutenant from 1670 to 1672. His 
father, as it would appear, was an indepen- 
dent land owner ; and an old " keep," (a kind 
of strong tower, built in the centre of a castle 
or fort,) now mouldering along the banks of 
the Nore, near the estate of Woodstock, is 
still shown as his former place of residence. 

We have referred to the fact that Bishop 
Berkeley's father was the collector of Belfast, 
and it may interest some of our readers to 
mention that it was here, in 1690, that 
William, Prince of Orange, was welcomed by 
the magistrates and burgesses in their robes 
of office, while the multitude pressed about 
his carriage with shouts of " God save the 
Protestant King !" The town was one of the 
strongholds of the reformed faith, and the 
€ffrors of Rome found little favor there. • 

At the time Mr. Berkeley was the collector 
of Belfast, the town was only a small settle- 
ittent of two or three hundred houses, com- 
laanded by a stately castle, the seat of the 
nobla family of Chichester. 


This castle has long since disappeared^ but 
the march of inxprovement has accomplished 

" Other Irish towns may present more pio 
turesque forms to the eje, but Belfast is the 
only large Irish town in which the traveller is 
not^ disgusted by the loathsome aspect, and 
odor of long lines of human dens, far inferior 
in comfort and cleanliness to the dwellings 
which, in happier countries, are provided for 
cattle. No other large Irish town is so well 
cleaned, so well paved, so brilliantly lighted. 
The place of domes and spires is supplied by 
edifices less pleasing to the taste, but not less 
indicative of prosperity, huge factories, tower- 
ing many stories above the chimneys of the 
houses, and resounding with the roar of 
machinery."* Could Mr. Berkeley return 
once more to the earth, he would be unable to 
recognize the place. 

When George was about four years old, 
there was a great excitement in the Emerald 

* Macaulay'B England, voL lU., 666-7, 


Isle, of which he must have retained at least 
a faint recollection all his days. James the 
Second being driven from England in 1688, 
the king of Prance furnished him with a fleet, 
and a goodly number of soldiers, with which 
he sailed to Ireland, hoping that the people 
there would help him to regain his cro^n. 
He landed at Kinsale, and called a parlia- 
ment, at the same time sending forth procla- 
mations commanding his subjects to take up 
arms against the Prince of Orange. 

James soon showed his despotic disposition, 
by dismissing all Protestants from the council 
of state, and by directing every place of wor- 
ship, except the Roman Catholic, to be closed. 

The people were forced to furnish provis- 
ions to feed his hungry troops, and in return 
they received money of little value, bits of 
brass worth about fourpence being stamped 
as five pounds. Public indignation was 
aroused, the Protestants took up arms, and 
soldiers were sent forth from England to 
assist them. 


And then King William came, as we men- 
tioned in a previous paragraph, and James 
was defeated at the battle of the Boyne, 
June 30th, 1690, and was glad to seek refuge 
once moi'e within the territories of the French 

By this time George Berkeley had barely 
reached his sixth year, so that these exciting 
events had occasioned him very little concern. 
On looking about us, to see what was going on 
in other parts of the world about the same 
period, we find that William Penn was just 
coming back to England, leaving his colony 
in America in a prosperous condition, Phila- 
delphia numbering almost a hundred houses. 
La Salle had gone down the Mississippi river, 
and named the country, from the Gulf of 
Mexico to the lakes, Louisiana, in honor of 
his king, Louis the Fourteenth. Sir Edmond 
Andros was ruling with a high hand over the 
New England Colonies. In 1689, the sava- 
ges made a dreadful attack upon Dover, New 
Hampshire, taking vengeance on the whites 


for some of their injustice and cruelty, and a 
year afterward Schenectady, in the Province 
of New- York, was burnti sixty persons being 
killed, and twenty-five made prisoners. 

America was then so far from Europe 
(the power of steam has diminished the dis- 
tance now) that it took news a long while to 
travel across the water, and even then the 
parents of George Berkeley little thought 
that he would ever go over to the New 
World on a mission of mercy to the red man. 
No one can foresee what may happen to him- 
self, much less can he anticipate what may be 
the destiny of his children. 

If our hero had been a militai y man, or had 
acted a conspicuous part as a politician, more 
pains might have been taken lo treasupe up 
interesting particulars concerning his early 
days : but as he was a scholar and clergyman, 
and withal a quiet, unobtrusive person, no 
biographer has thought proper to record such 
things concerning him as so many thousands 
would now be glad to know. 


In 1696, the future -philosopher was sent to 
Kilkenny school, which had been endowed by 
fhe House of Ormonde, and which still rises 
from pleasant meadows before their renovated 
castle. Here, a lew years before, Congreve* 
and Swift had been school-fellows together ; 
the name of the latter, cut in boyish fashion 
upon his desk or form, being shown to stran- 
gers to this day. 

Dr. Hinton was master of Kilkenny school 
in George Berkeley's time, and his distinction 
afterward is evidence enough that his early 
advantages were not thrown away. We may be 
certain, also, that at school, as elsewhere, he 
must have been distinguished for that kindli- 
ness of disposition, and modesty of character, 
which, in after years, Atterbury described as 

• William Congreve was a celebrated English drama- 
list, born in 1670. He began his literary career by wri- 
ting a novel entitled the Incognita. This was followed, 
at the age of twenty-one, by the comedy of the Old Bach- 
elor, which brought him into notice. 

If the pictures which he presents of the fine gentle- 


men and ladies of those times be correct, the reign of 
Charles 11. must indeed have had a dreadJAil effect on. 
the national character. 

The poetry of Oongreve is not much thought of. He 
died in London, at the age of sixty. 



Yooiig Berkeley enters Trinity College, Dublin— Cer- 
tain political events referred to — The college as it 
used to be — King James' visit to Dublin — A great dis- 
play of blankets and coverlets — The tide changes — 
Trinity College suffers a reverse of fortune— Dr. St. 
Greorge Ashe and his two distinguished pupils — Mr. 
Berkeley obtains a fellowship — Admitted to holy 
orders — Career as an author begun — Twelve years in 
retirement and study — Whigs and Tories — Mr. Berke- 
ley's political opinions — Locke, and metaphysical stud- 
ies — A privilege allowed of which some will probably 
avail themselves. 

T the age of fifteen, young Berkeley 
entered Trinity College, Dublin. This 
famous institution had been founded by Queen 
Elizabeth, in the year 1591, and has always 
sustained a high rank among the Universities 
of Europe. The students are divided into 
three classes: Fellow-Commoners, Pension- 
ers, and Sizars, about -thirty in number, who 
receive their board and instruction without 

cost. Bomftn Catholics and Dissenters are not 


shut out from its privileges, as they have been 
from the English Universities. 

We spoke, in our last chapter, of certain 
political events in Ireland, which took place 
during the boyhood of George Berkeley. 

It will add some interest to his arrival at 
Dublin, if we recall some of the scenes that 
had once transpired there. On the 24th of 
March, 1689, King James had entered the 
city, on the important business before referred 
to. The college then lay quite beyond the 
limits of the town, and the building was a 
shabby one, compared with the present noble 
structure. Dublin itself was not much to 
boast of, most of the dwellings being built of 
wood, and the streets were well nigh impas- 
sable on account of the mud. 

The arrival of the king was a great occa- 
sion, as may be supposed, and every eflfort was 
made to render his entrance into the city as 
imposing as possible. Gravel was scattered 
over the streets, and showy tapestry was dis- 
played from the windows of the rich, while 


the poor hung out their best blankets and 
coverlets. A procession of twenty coaches 
accompanied his Majesty, and in the chapel of 
the Lord Lieutenant a Te Deum was chanted 
by the Romish clergy, in honor of the arrival 
of King James, who was a most devoted ad- 
herent of the Pope. 

We have already given the signal of his 
bold attempt to recover his throne, and there 
is only space to add, that when he felt himself 
strong enough to exercise his despotic will, 
some good Protestants, who had been disposed 
quietly to submit to his dominion, as the law- 
ful sovereign, were made to suffer for thus re- 
posing any confidence in his promises. Among 
these were the rulers of the University of 
Dublin, who had greeted James on his first 
arrival, and had been assured by him that he 
would protect them in the enjoyment of their 
property and privileges. « They were now, 
without any trial, without any accusation, 
thrust out of their house. The communion- 
plate of the chapel, the books in the library. 


the very chairs and beds of the collegians, 
were seized. Part of the building was turned 
into a magazine, part into a barrack, part 
into a prison. Simon Luttrell, who was gov- 
ernor of the capital, was, with great difficulty 
and by powerful intercession, induced to let 
the ejected fellows and scholars depart in 

Ten years only had passed away since 
these exciting times, when young Berkeley 
first made his appearance at Dublin, and 
became a student of Trinity College. The 
incidents which we have related in brief, were 
often dwelt upon by the students, as they sat 
by their comfortable winter's fire, and smoked 
their pipes, and our hero could almost imag- 
ine that he had witnessed these things for him- 
self. Meanwhile, poor King James, shorn of 
his royal honors, and a pensioner upon his 
French brother, was spending the closing 
years of his life in acts of ascetic devotion, 
trying to forget the vicissitudes which he had 

•Maoaulay, vol. III., p. 201. 

DB. ASHE. 29 

experienced in this world, by preparing for 
his departure to another. Dr. St. George 
Ashe, afterward Bishop of Clogher, was 
young Berkeley's tutor at Trinity College, 
having a few years before sustained the same 
relation to the eccentric Jonathan Swift.* 
He became the common friena of both his 
eminent pupils, and had the satisfaction, in 
course of time, of persuading the brilliant 
author of the « Tale of a Tub" to silence 
scandal, by giving the name of wife to the ill- 
fated Stella. 

In 1707, Mr. Berkeley obtained a fellow- 
ship in Trinity College, having previously 

• With all his genius, we can feel nothing but dislike 
for Dean Swift. As Mr. Thackeray remarks, in his Lec- 
tures on the English Humorists of the Eighteenth Century 
(p. 48), " His laugh jars on one's ear, after seven score 
years. He was always alone, and gnashing in the dark- 
ness, except when Stella's sweet smile came and shone 
upon him ; when that went, silence and utter night 
closed over him. An immense genius ; an awful down- 
fall and ruin ; so great a man he seems to me, that 
thinking of him is like thinking of an empire falling." 
The only charitable construction to be put upon much 
of his conduct is that the man was mad. 


sustained with honor a very rigid examina- 
tion, which all candidates for this preferment 
were required to undergo. The same year he 
was admitted to holy orders. Among his 
manuscript sermons is one on the text 1, 
Timothy, ii. 10, which has this note on a fly 
loaf at the end: "College Chapell, Sunday 
evening, January 11, 1707-8." 

It is much to be regretted that no particu- 
lars are known concerning this most impor- 
tant step in his life. We do not suppose that 
any person who is acquainted with the char- 
acter of Mr. Berkeley will imagine, for a 
moment, that he belonged to that class of 
clergymen (now happily so seldom to be met 
with) who assumed the solemn vows of the min- 
istry in order to gain a comfortable living, for 
ho was undoubtedly a sincerely pious man, 
and one who desired, in all things, to promote 
God's glory. At the same time, much of the 
interest and value of biography consists in 
these details of character and motives which, 
in this case, it is impossible to furnish. 


Before he was twenty years of age Mr. 
Berkeley had written a treatise, entitled 
Arithmetic Demonstrated without the aid of Al^ 
gehra. That he became an accomplished 
mathematician is evident from many of his 
works, although metaphysics engaged more of 
his attention for awhile than any other pur- 

He remained at the University for twelve 
years, and during this long period of retire- 
ment and study, he acquired that love for 
seclusion from the busy world which induced 
him, in after life, to abandon a comfortable 
living for a quiet nook in the University of 

We must frankly confess that we should 
prefer to know something more of Mr. Berke- 
ley as a preacher of the gospel, but there is 
little to gratify us in this respect. It might 
be readily imagined, indeed, that a man with 
a mind so highly cultivated, and who possessed 
Buch wonderful eloquence in conversation, 
would make a very favorable impression in 


the pulpit. This was undoubtedly the case ; 
but with his peculiar tastes and habits of 
mind, the pulpit was not so much his appro- 
prigite sphere of action as the regions of phil- 
osophical thought, the walks of benevolence, 
and those gatherings of the learned and re- 
fined, where wit and wisdom contended to- 
gether in bloodless strife. 

In 1712, we find him preaching three able 
discourses in the College Chapel, on the doc- 
trine of passive obedience to the powers that 
be, which gave occasion to much discussion 

Although, as a clergyman, Mr. Berkeley 
would have little occasion to be mixed up in 
politics, he had his own opinions, and was 
regarded as a decided Tory in principle. And 
here, as the terms Whig and Tory frequently 
occur in history, it will be best to explain 
that they had their origin during the reign of 
Charles the Second. Bishop Burnet, in his 
History of his Ovm Times, furnishes the follow- 
ing explanation : « The Southwest counties of 


Scotland have seldom corn enough to serve 
them round the year, and the northern parts 
producing more than they need, those in the 
west come in the summer to buy at Leith the 
stores that come from the north ; and, from a 
word, *whiggam,' used in driving their horses, 
all that drove were called whiggamores, and 
shorter, whiggs. Now in that year, after the 
news came down of Duke Hamilton's defeat, 
the ministers animated their people to rise 
and march to Edinburgh, and then came up 
marchiug at the head of their parishes, with 
unheard of fury, praying and preaching all 
the way as they came. The Marquis of Ar- 
gyle and his party came and headed them, 
they being about six thousand. This was 
called the whiggamores' inroad, and ever after 
that, all that opposed the courts came, in con- 
tempt, to be called whiggs : and from Scotland 
the word was brought into England, where it 
is now one of our unhappy terms of distinc- 
tion." Subsequently, all whose party bias 
was democratic were called whigs. The 


origin of the word Tory is not so well at- 
tested. The Irish malecontents, half robbers 
and half insurgents, who harassed the Eng- 
lish ia Ireland at the time of the massacre in 
1640, were the first to whom this epithet was 
applied. It was also applied to the court 
party as a term of reproach. 

The bigotry and intolerance of James 11. 
had so effectually excited all classes against 
him, that during the reign of William party 
distinctions were not so important as they had 
been before, and when we speak of Mr. Berke- 
ley as having a leaning toward the Tories in 
politics, it must be understood in this mild 
and modified sense.* 

His peculiar gentleness and sincerity of 
character made him welcome in any circle, 
and he was a favorite even among the zealous 
whigs, who idolized Locke, and toasted King 

• A Ml account of the origin of the terms Whig and 
Tory will be found in the Encyclopedia Americana, 
voL XIII., p. 67. See also Smuoker's History of the four 
Georges, p. 36. 


William in the common room of Trinity Col- 

The mention of the name of John Locke* 
reminds us to say that at this time his well 
known Essay dmceming the Human Under^ 
standing was attracting intense interest among 
those whose tastes led them to engage in 
speculative philosophy. This was particu- 
larly the case in the English Universities. 
When the great metaphysician was exiled from 
Oxford, on account of his political opinions, 
his views were the more readily adopted at 
Trinity College, Dublin, by reason of this op- 
position. Among those who entered into this 
field of investigation with the greatest ardor 
and enthusiasm, was Mr. Berkeley; and he 
soon made himself quite distinguished in this 
way. In the next chapter, we shall have 
something more to say about these things, and 
as much of it may be rather dry and uninte- 

* An interesting sketch of Mr. Locke's life is con- 
tained in Chambers* Cyclopaedia of English Literature, 
voL i., p. 608. 


resting to our younger readers, it will perhaps 
be better for them to pass on to the fourth 



iTears full of interest, in more than one point of view — 
Changes and chances in the jralitical world— An un- 
fcrtnnate remedy proposed— the Penal CJode — Publica- 
tion of the New Theory of Vision — Locke's germ de- 
veloped into a plausible theory — Two important dis- 
coveries — Other metaphysical works — ^Berkeley's de- 
sign not fully accomplished in the refutation of L:ifi- 
d^ty— Close of his Academical career. 

i2?HB years of Berkeley's college life (re- 
* marks an able writer in the British Quar^ 
terly Review) were pregnant with the social 
and political fortune of his country. In an 
evil hour Louis XIV. had recognised the son of 
James II. as King of England, and thereby 
soon quickened into activity the Grand Alli- 
ance against him. The throne of Spain was 
the pretext and the prize of the strife which 
now convulsed Europe. In the vast area for 
conflict which stretched from Gibraltar to the 
Orkneys, and from the Orkneys to the Adri- 


atic, Ireland was a prominent object to the 
belligerents on either side. There, a few- 
years before, England and France had met in 
fierce encounter, aggravated by a cruel civil 
warfare. Louis knew that his royal puppet 
of the House of Stuart might there be some- 
thing like a king de facto. There, he trusted, 
that were the Bourbon flag to be raised, it 
would arm against England the hatred of the 
Irish Roman Catholic nation. Every English 
statesman, from Halifax to Walpole, felt that 
there England reigned only over the Anglo- 
Protestant minority. 

While Ireland was thus a most vulnerable 
point, its puritan Parliament began to clamor 
for securities against their popish enemies. 
Unfortunately, these were taken in the form 
of a penal code against the Soman Catholics, 
which, for eighty years, assured their degra- 
dation, and has produced calamities which have 
not yet disappeared. While, from his study 
in Trinity College, Berkeley was viewing, in 
Plato's creations, the eflfects of right and 


wrong in political society, he might have 
marked, close by, a living example of the 
legalization of iniquity, and have calculated 
the event of political crime. He might have 
heard Sir Theobald Butler appeal in vain to 
the puritan zealots of the Irish House of Com- 
mons to stay a course of legislation which was 
about to crush his race ; and might have seen 
how civil hatred and fear can banish reason 
from law. We wish we could record that he 
ever protested against the penal code; but 
when it was enacted he was immersed in specu- 
lation, and probably did not think on the 
subject; and though his late writings prove 
that his feelings toward his Roman Catholic 
fellow-countrymen were more liberal than 
those of his contemporaries, it is not likely 
that he would have repudiated a policy which 
had the sanction of Somers, and of St. John, 
of Locke, and of Swift, of Addison and 

In 1709, at the early age of five-and- 
twenty, Mr. Berkeley presented to the world 


the first fruitB of his metaphysical investiga- 
tions, in a work entitled a New Theory of 
Vision. It unfolded an entirely new and 
highly important truth, both in optical and 
intellectual science ; and while we grant that 
Locke furnished the germ of the discovery, 
the young philosopher certainly deserves 
great credit for having so skilfully developed 
it into a plausible theory, which has since been 
verified as a well established fact. Reid, who 
has endeavored, throughout his Essays on the 
Powers of the Human Mind, to depreciate the 
labors of Berkeley in the same field, admits 
that "The Theory of Vision contains very 
important discoveries, and marks of great 
genius." The work indeed contains two dis- 
coveries of very considerable importance, the 
one limited to the science of optics, the other 
of much more general application. 

First, Berkeley has clearly and very sim- 
ply shown that the eye is incapable of con- 
veying to the mind the idea of distance, as 
measured from the spectator, by observing that 


such distance must be represented by a line 
placed with its end toward the eye, which 
would of course present to the eye a point 
only. Our notion of optical distance is in 
fact acquired by a continual series of experi- 
ments of the touch, and of the bodily mo- 
tion required to bring ourselves in contact 
with an object, the presence of which only, 
but not its distance, is intimated to us by cer- 
tain impressions on the eye. An infant may 
be observed making these experiments, and 
stretching out its hand several times short of 
the object whose presence has been announced 
by the eye, before the distance is accurately 
ascertained. Persons who lose the sight of 
one eye are found also to require fresh experi- 
mental tuition in the measuring of distances ; 
and persons born blind from cataract, on be- 
ing couched at mature years, have stated that 
the objects touched their eyes. 

The treatise contains many minor discov- 
eries, also of considerable interest, with ref-' 
erence to the science of optics, which flow 


naturally as corollaries from the above ; and 
in particular, the author suggests that « what 
we see are not solids, nor yet planes variously 
colored, they are only diversity of colors." 
In truth, if there were no color there would 
be no visible figure, as may easily be seen if 
one were to attempt to delineate a circle or 
any other figure on a colored surface with a 
brush dipped in precisely the same color; 
whilst the color is wet it will be in fact a 
diflferent color, and will therefore show the 
circle, but when it becomes dry no figure will 
be visible for want of a diflference of color ; 
so if there were nothing but white, uncolored 
light, in nature, and it were capable of pass- 
ing freely through all bodies assuming no 
shade (i. e., no contrast of color), there 
would be no visible figure. 

The second of the discoveries we have re- 
ferred to is this, that tangible figure is wholly 
distinct from visible figure; in other words, 
that the table we see is not that which we 
touch. The table we see, if it be circular, 

reid's review. 43 

will appear in most positions an oval to the 
eye, it will be smaller as we retire from it, 
and larger as we approach it, and will be 
continually shifting its form as we alter our 
positions, as every person acquainted with 
drawing must be well aware. These changes 
do not occur in the tangible table. Simple as 
the remark appears, yet as Reid has observed 
(in reference to this discovery), "the notion 
of extension and figure which we get from 
sight only, and that which we get from touch, 
have been so constantly conjoined from our 
infancy, that it required great abilities to dis- 
tinguish them accurately, and to assign to 
each sense what truly belongs to it." 

« This point," says Reid again, " Berkeley 
has labored through the whole of the Essay 
on Vision with that uncommon penetration 
and judgment which he possessed. The 
experiment has in fact since been repeatedly 
made, in the cases of persons operated on for 
cataract to which they had been subject from 
birth. They have been unable to distinguish 


a dog, for instance, from a cat, by sight, till 
after repeated trial, handling each animal 
first, and then looking at it, as a child learns 
to refer the letters, when spelling, to the 
pictures of the animals in his spelling-book. 
The visible object is a translation of the tan- 
gible into another language, and vice versa." 
We have said that his second discovery ad- 
mits of very general application. It must 
have originally required much mental eflfort 
thus to sever ideas associated with each other 
form the earliest period of our existence, and 
there can be little doubt that Berkeley was thus 
led to his more extended speculations on what 
has been usually termed the existence of mat- 
ter. In fact his great work, entitled " The 
Principles of Human Knowledge," was pub- 
lished in 1710, the year after the New The- 
ory of Vision, and this was followed, in 1713, 
by "Three Dialogues between Hylas and Phi- 
lonous," in which the same views are en- 
forced, but in the more popular form of dia- 
logues — written, too, in a style to which 


nothing can be found comparable except that 
of Plato. It may be said, perhaps, that 
Berkeley failed in accomplishing the end he 
had in view — the refutation of infidelity — 
and that so far from furnishing Christianity 
with new modes of defence, he put into the 
hands of its enemies weapons which they 
eflfectively employed in their assaults upon 
virtue and religion. This, it must be admit- 
ted, was, to some extent, the result of his 
labors, yet it was not the fault of Berkeley. 
The tendency of his book was to promote the 
cause of piety in the world. If it was per- 
verted, in a measure, from its original design, 
and, by the misapplication of its principles 
for a while, partly pressed into the service of 
infidelity, the same may be said of Locke's 
Essay on the Human Understanding, and Ed- 
wards on the Will, and several other cele- 
brated metaphysical treatises. 

We have now followed Berkeley through 
one of the important periods of his tictive 
life, his academical career. Within this space 


of time he had run a brilliant course. He 
had gathered a large store of profound and 
varied knowledge. He had won a high repu- 
tation at the University as a scholar. He 
had placed himself among the greatest specu- 
lative philosophers, not only of his own, but 
of all preceding ages; and this, too, he had 
eflfected at a period of life when most men 
have hardly become prepared to take an 
active part in the affairs of the world.* 

• The contents of this chapter are chiefly taken from 
Hook's Ecclesiastical Biography (Rivingtons, London), 
vol. 2., p. 265, etc. 



Personal appearance of our hero — Warm Irish temper- 
ament — No stranger to the literary world — Swift's in- 
fluence extended in his behalf— Chaplain to the Earl 
of Peterborough — Setting out for Sicily — General 
Oglethorpe — The fidgety soldier makes a sudden start 
— ^Parisian sights — Crossing mount Cenis in open 
chairs — Three weeks at Geneva — The earl forgets his 
chaplam — The English clergyman at Leghorn — Basil 
Kennet and his trying position — The Roman Catholics 
regard him as a saint — Mr. Berkeley's curious adven- 
ture — ^Blessing the houses to keep off rats and vermin. 

M^ S Mr. Berkeley is about to go forth, now, 
•*^'^ from the cloistered restraint of college 
life to mingle more freely with the world, our 
readers may be glad to catch a glimpse of his 
person and manners. He was of middle 
stature, and of erect and dignified carriage; 
his strength of limbs being uncommon, and 
his constitution naturally robust. His coun- 
tenance was expressive of intellect and benev- 
olence, and his manners were polished and 


agreeable. To a childhood passed in Ireland 
may be ascribed, at least in part, the frank- 
ness, the warmth of feeling, and the imagina- 
tion which endeared him to his contemporaries. 
The startling character of some of Mr. 
Berkeley's theories, the ingenuity of his argu- 
ments, and the extent of his learning, had 
drawn public attention toward him, and when 
he emerged from the seclusion Iun which he 
had hitherto remained, he found that he was 
no stranger in the world. 

It is probable that he had been acquainted 
with Swift before the latter left Ireland, to 
mingle in those disputes and humiliating 
scenes of political jealousy so carefully delin- 
eated in his journals and letters. But, how- 
ever this may be, it is certain that when the 
new philosopher made his first visit to Eng- 
land, in the early part of 1713, Swift exerted 
himself to promote his interest, and he soon 
became the literary associate and intimate 
companion of Addison, Steele, Arbuthnot, 
and Pope. Several of the papers in the 


Guardian^ which first appeared under the 
direction of Steele, March 12, 1713, were 
written by Berkeley. In November, of the 
same year, through the influence of Swift 
(who, in spite of his faults, was often very 
active in furthering the interests of his 
friends), he received the appointment of chap- 
lain and secretary to the Earl of Peter- 
borough. This brilliant and eccentric noble- 
man had been selected as ambassador to 
Sicily — then recently ceded to Victor Amadeus 
by the treaty of Utrecht. 

James Edward Oglethorpe,* who was after- 
ward distinguished by his exertions to found 
the colony of Georgia, for which he obtained 
a royal charter, was an officer in Peter- 
boi'Ough's suite tpon this occasion. 

• This celebrated general officer was born in London, 
in 1698, and educated at Oxford. After serving under 
Prince Eugene, he conducted a body of emigrants to 
Georgia, being accompanied to the new world by John 
and Charles Wesley. Southey's Life of Wesley gives 
many curious details. In 1734, Oglethorpe returned 
to England with an Indian boy, and two years later he 
went back to Georgia with another company of settlers. 


From the acquaintance which he then 
formed with Mr. Berkeley may be traced 
some of those benevolent schemes which 
marked Oglethorpe in later years. 

The earl and the philosopher were not 
long to be travelling companions. "The 
fidgety soldier, in one of his wonted fits of 
hurry, left chaplain, family, and baggage, at 
Leghorn, and sped onward without such im- 
pediments. Berkeley's letters to his friend, 
Thomas Prior, one of the few unobtrusive 
patriots of whom Ireland can boast, gave a 
lively account of this journey. He notices 
the "splendor and riches of the churches, con- 
vents, palaces, and colleges" of Paris, and 
significantly alludes to the misery of the 
people, ruined by the long war of the succes- 
sion ; although, from fear of the French Post- 
As commander of the English fbrces in Georgia and 
Carolina, he successfully warded off the assaults of the 
Spaniards. In 1745, he became a major-general, and 
was employed to follow the rebels under the Pretender. 
His private character was extremely amiable, and he 
had many devoted friends. 


oflScGy he "declines speaking of it." He 
listens to "a disputation at the Sorbonne," 
" full of French fire," and meditates a visit to 
Malebranche, which, however, was unpaid. 

In crossing the Alps, on his way from 
Lyons to Turin, he is " carried across Mount 
Cenis in open chairs, along rocks and preci- 
pices, where a false step was death ;" a route 
more like that of Hannibal's soldiers than 
that which is now open to the traveller. At 
Turin, his Tory feeling for the peace of 
Utrecht makes him glad to find that it has 
not alienated the Piedmontese, and that there 
"every Englishman is sure of respect." He 
stays three weeks at Genoa, to admire its 
painted palaces, its groves of orange and fig, 
and its stately port at Leghorn. In the 
course of a complimentary letter upon the 
Rape of the Lock^ he informs Pope of his aban- 
donment by his patron. It would appear, 
indeed, that Peterborough had quite forgot- 
ten his chaplain, and never took him to Sicily 
at all. A curious story is told of an adventure 


which Mr. Berkeley met with during his visit 
at Leghorn. It seems that, in 1706, some 
English merchants who were living there, 
requested Dean Kennett, then Rector of St. 
Mary, Aldermany, to express to Archbishop 
Tenison their great desire to have a Church 
clergyman sent out to oflSciate for their bene- 
fit; a privilege which the Church of Rome had 
hitherto refused to allow. Even then no ex- 
pr^s license could be obtained, but the Grand 
Duke of Tuscany had promised that if a chap- 
lain should be appointed for the English resi- 
dents, he would wink at this disregard of the 
old custom which intolerance had so long con- 

Dean Kennett secured the dangerous posi- 
tion for his younger brother, Basil, then a 
Fellow, and afterward President of Corpus 
Christi College, Oxford, who accordingly went 
to Leghorn. The indignation of the Church 
of Rome was instantly aroused, and the " he- 
retical teacher," as they chose to call him, was 
forbidden to remain. 


Only one concession was made, and this 
was that the English envoy at Florence might 
allow Mr. Kennett to live in his own house as his 
private' chaplain, if he chose to do so, and this 
plan was accordingly proposed to the worthy 
clergyman. But, although he was well aware 
that orders had been given for his seizure and 
imprisonment, he refused to forsake his little 
flock ; and his brother, the dean, with whom 
he corresponded on the subject, advised him 
to persist in this course. 

The door of Kennett's chamber, in which he 
passed most of his time, was kept secure ; an 
armed sentinel was stationed at the foot of the 
stairs, and in the evening, when he sometimes 
walked out, he was attended by two English 
merchants, one on each side of him, with drawn 
swords, ready to defend him to the death. 

In the midst of these diflSculties a despatch 
arrived from the Earl of Sunderland, one of 
the queen's principal secretaries of state, bid- 
ding the English envoy assure the grand duke 
that, if any evil befell her Majesty's chaplain 


at Leghorn, she would regard it as an affront 
done to herself and her country, and a breach 
of the law of nations ; that she would, by her 
fleets and armies, forthwith demand and take 
satisfaction for the wrong ; that the subjects 
of the grand duke, in England, and those who 
then frequented, without impediment, the place 
of worship to which they resorted in London, 
would be placed in jeopardy ; and that, if any 
more were said of the pope, or court of Rome, 
the envoy was to "cut the matter short, by 
telling them that the queen of Englaud had 
nothing to do with that court, but would treat 
with the grand duke as with other indepen- 
dent princes and states." 

There could be no mistake as to the mean- 
ing of this letter; and the signal victories 
recently gained by England on the continent, 
were no insignificant witnesses to convince the 
court of Tuscany that it was not safe to be 
any longer the instrument of inquisitorial 

All acts and threats of opposition, there- 


forej ceased for a time ; and Kennett contin- 
ued, for several years afterward, officiating 
publicly in a large room in the consul's house, 
at Leghorn, and commending, yet more per- 
suasively, by the consistency of his daily walk 
and conversation, the power of those truths 
which, by his learning and eloquence, he en- 
forced. The Roman Catholics of that city 
might well have been ashamed of their hostil- 
ity against him — if for no other reason, for 
the singular agreement with which a majority 
of the people were, in the end, won over to 
his side. At the time of Mr. Berkeley's visit 
to Leghorn, he was gratified to find that the 
Roman Catholics regarded Kennett as a 

And now for the story, for which we have 
been obliged to prepare the way by this long 
episode. Basil Kennett had asked him to 
preach for him one Sunday ; and the day fol- 
lowing, as Berkeley was sitting in his chamber, 
a procession of priests in surplices, and with 
all other formalities, entered the room, and, 


without taking the least notice of the wonder- 
ing inhabitant, marched quite round it, mut- 
tering certain prayers. His fears immediately 
suggested to him that this could be no other 
than a visit from the Inquisition, who had 
heard of his officiating before heretics without 
license the day before. As soon as they 
were gone, he ventured, with much caution, 
to inquire into the cause of this extraordi- 
nary appearance, and was happy to bo in- 
formed that this was the season appointed by 
the Romish calendar for solemnly blessing the 
houses of all good Catholics from rats and 
other vermin ;* a piece of intelligence which 
changed his terror into mirth. 

• The church of Eome has another singular custom — 
that of blessing horses and other animals, on the Festi- 
val of St. Anthony. See Jarves* Italian Sights, &o, 
(Harper & Brother), p. 278. 



Important political events in England — Whigs and 
Tories at war— Death of Queen Anne — End of the 
Stuart dynasty — How George the First became King 
of England — His portrait drawn — Lord Peterborough 
and his Chaplain return home — Hopes of advance- 
ment blasted — Severe illness — A jocular letter from 
Dr. Arbuthnot — George's first Parliament — Impeach- 
ment of some of Queen Anne's ministers — Tumultu- 
ous gatherings and riots — Meeting-houses torn down 
— Plots of the Jacobites — Mr. Berkeley packs his 
trunk for another journey. 

'IIILE Mr. Berkeley and Lord Peter- 
borough are sojourning in Italy, changes 
are taking place in England which are too im- 
portant to be left unnoticed. The reign of 
Queen Anne was, in many respects, a stormy 
one. Strife between contending parties ran 
high, and each in tuyn cherished hopes of suc- 
cess. During the later years of her reign the 
Tories were in the ascendant, and ruled the 
nation, their majority in both houses of Par- 


liament being overwhelming. But even then 
uninterrupted peace was not secured ; bitter 
jealousies and feuds sprang up between the 
members of the cabinet, and new plots were 
forming, when an unexpected event put an end 
to the supremacy of the Tories. I refer to 
the death of Queen Anne, which occurred on 
the first of August, 1714. 

She was a woman of narrow intellect, but 
of good intentions, and a model of conjugal 
and maternal duty. The title of " Good 
Queen Anne," bestowed upon her, shows in 
what estimation she was held by her subjects. 
Like other members of her family, she possess- 
ed a considerable share of obstinacy, and had 
Some of their notions of prerogative. With 
her ends the dynasty of the Stuarts.* By an 

• The Church in America had good reasons for re- 
membering Queen Anne. We have had occasion to refer 
to her in connection with the early history of the Church 
in Maryland and Virginia, and shall ftirnish other par- 
ticulars in the life of Bishop Moore, of New- York, in 
which the fortunes of Trinity Church, New -York, will 
be traced. 


act passed in the reign of William III., the 
succession of the British crown was now to be 
transferred from this illustrious and unfortu- 
nate race to the less noble but more yielding 
house of Hanover. 

George the First thus became king. He 
was the son of Sophia, wife of Ernest Augus- 
tus, Elector of Hanover ; Sophia herself being 
the daughter of Elizabeth, Queen of Bohemia, 
daughter of James I. of England. It was a 
singular circumstance that the Elector of 
Hanover should have been chosen to rule over 
the English nation, while, at that very mo- 
ment, there were fifty-four members of reign- 
ing houses in Europe, all of whom could pro- 
duce better claims to the British throne than 
he. But none of these were Protestants, and 
as England had already suffered too much 
from Roman Catholic rulers, it had been wise- 
ly determined that no adherent of the Pope 
should again occupy that place. 

We are sorry to say that George's religion 
did not trouble him very much. He was an 


honest, good-natured, sensual German, fifty- 
five years of age, dull of intellect, and diffident 
of his own capacity, who found far more en- 
joyment in drinking hot punch, eating sour- 
krout, and smoking his huge pipe, than in the 
encouragement of literature and science, or 
in attending to the affairs of state. He spoke 
English badly, and, on many accounts, he was 
an object of ridicule to the people whom he 
was called to govern. Except for the glory 
of wearing the English crown, he would have 
much preferred jbhe humble office of Elector of 
Hanover. While Anne was yet lying on her 
death-bed, the Whig party began quietly to 
organize, and the queen, with her feeble hands, 
gave the Lord Treasurer's staff to Shrewsbury, 
who accepted the trust in the sole interest of 
George the First. 
To the astonishment of the Jacobites,* all 

• In Great Britain the name of Jacobites was applied 
to the adherents of James II. and his posterity, and 
in particular to the non-jurors, whose separation from 
the English establishment consisted simply in their re- 


the instruments of revolution were taken out 
of their hands : and, without the loss of a life, 
the Protestant succession was secured. At- 
terbury in vain advised that James the Third 
should be proclaimed. St. John might idly 
boast that the Tories only wanted self-reliance 
to win. 

By September the new king was on the 
the throne, and the Pretender had lost the best 
chance that had ever appeared for him. At 
the first news of the great change, Peterbo- 
rough set oflF from Sicily at his wonted speed. 
From Paris he brought word that Louis, made 
wise by experience, had recognized George ; 
and in the rapidity of his motions, and of the 
times, he probably forgot all about his chap- 
lain, for Berkeley and he were not companions 
again. It would seem, indeed, that the un- 

fusal to take the oath of allegiance to the new king, and 
who held their own religious services for the purpose of 
praying for the Stuart family. They were most numer- 
ous in Scotland, and were very much lessened by the de- 
feat of the Pretender, in 1745. When he died at Borne, 
in 1788, they began to pray for George m. 


congenial associates did not keep up any sub- 
sequent correspondence. 

It was in the month of August, 1714, that 
Mr. Berkeley returned to England, and on 
the 18th of the next month King George 
landed at Greenwich, and entered upon those 
duties which he was so poorly qualified to dis- 
charge. With the death of Queen Anne, and 
the overthrow of the Tory administration, our 
philosopher's hopes for advancement in the 
Church, through their influence, were blasted. 

Toward the close of the year he sufifered 
from an attack of fever, in describing which 
to his friend Swift, Dr. Arbuthnot could not 
help indulging in a little pleasantry on 
Berkeley's favorite system. He thus writes ; 
«19th of October, 1714. Poor philosopher 
Berkeley has now the idea of healthy which was 
very hard to produce in him ; for he had an 
idea of a strange fever on him so strong, that 
it was very hard to destroy by introducing a 
contrary one." 

If Mr. Berkeley had known of this jocose 


remark, he would have considered it rather 
hard to be really sick, and to be laughed at 
by his friends, who either could not or would 
not be at the pains to acquire a knowledge of 
the system which they endeavored to turn into 

The first parliament which assembled after 
the coronation of George, met in March, 
1715, and was composed almost entirely of 
Whigs. One of its earliest acts "i;ras to 
impeach the prominent members of Queen 
Anne's cabinet, on the charge of high trea- 
son ; and although our philosopher was not a 
public man, he must have felt a deep interest 
in all that was going on about him. 

Sir Robert Walpole informed the house 
that the papers found in the office of Lord 
Bolingbroke furnished ample grounds for 
accusation, and after examining the case, his 
lordship was formally impeached, the Earl of 
Ormond being also included in the act. Both 
of these distinguished personages immediately 
fled to Prance. 


Althougli the whig party reigned with 
absolute authority during the first year after 
the accession of George I., they were not 
undisturbed in the exercise of their suprem- 
acy. On the 23d of April, 171 5, the anni- 
versary of the birth-day of Queen Anne 
occurred, and riots and tumultuous gatherings 
disgraced the metropolis. The mob patrolled 
the streets, shouting " God bless the Queen, 
High Church, Bolingbroke, and Sacheverell." 
Many of the meeting-houses of the Dissenters 
were in danger of being burned down. Other 
and greater riots took place subsequently, on 
the occurrence of the birth-day of the Duke 
of Ormondw At Oxford, the Quaker chapel 
was torn down by the rabble; at Manches- 
ter all the dissenting meeting-houses were de- 
stroyed. Gradually the spirit of disorder 
spread through Staffordshire, Cheshire, and 
various portions of the kingdom, till at 
length it became so formidable that the well- 
known riot act was passed, for the purpose 
of aiding in the suppression of the existing 


tumults. The royal troops were busily em- 
ployed in arresting and punishing the mal- 
contents. Nevertheless, secret plots were 
gradually forming by the zealous Jacobites 
throughout England, for the purpose of coop- 
erating with the same faction in Scotland, to 
effect the restoration of the Pretender ; though 
the open and final consummation of this 
movement did not take place until a subse- 
quent period. But Mr. Berkeley could not 
well afford to remain idle, while opposing 
factions were contending together, and he 
gladly accepted the offer made to him by his 
former tutor, now Bishop of Clogher, in Ire- 
land, that he should accompany his son, Mr. 
Ashe (who was heir to a handsome fortune), 
on a tour through Europe. While the travellers 
are packing their trunks, we will bring our 
chapter to a close, in order to be ready to 
accompany them on the journey. 



A great treat — The two travellers cross over into France 
— Mr. Berkeley hunts up a celebrated philosopher— 
Malebranche is introduced to our readers — The sick 
man in his cell — An unfortunate discussion— Four 
yeai^ abroad — CareM examination of the island of 
Sicily — Journals lost — Two intersting letters — The 
island of Inarime — Mons Apomeus — Life at Naples 
— Mount Vesuvius — A hideous bellowing — Torrent of 
liquid fire — Pillar of black smoke — Quietness restored. 

M^ TOUR on the continent of Europe, with 
•^^^^ an agreeable and intelligent companion, 
is one of the greatest treats which a person 
can possibly enjoy. Such was the privilege 
now afforded to young Mr. Ashe. 

Crossing over to Prance, the two travellers 
made their way to Paris, where Mr. Berkeley 
was not long in finding the celebrated Male- 
branche, whom he had so much desired to see. 
It will do no harm, at least, to inform our 
young readers that this celebrated philosopher, 
Malebranche, was educated to be a Bomish 


priest, and having perfected himself in various 
departments of ecclesiastical learning, he acci- 
dentally met with Descartes' Treatise on Man. 
This opened before him new fields of study, 
and in 1673 he published the result of his in- 
vestigations, in a work entitled, " On the search 
after Truth." Other similar productions fol- 
lowed, until Father Malebranche became vene- 
rated for his elevated genius, while his amiable 
disposition and simple manners secured the 
friendship of all who met with him. 

Mr. Berkeley found his illustrious rival in 
metaphysical sagacity shut up in his monastic 
cell, suffering from a disease of the lungs, for 
which he was at that moment preparing some 
medicine, in a small vessel upon the fire. 

The conversation turned upon metaphysics. 
Malebranche had appealed to faith to recon- 
cile his peculiar form of supernatural idealism 
with consciousness, and thus had flattered him- 
self that philosophy would only confirm relig- 
ion. «La foy," he says, " m'apprend que Dieu 
a ct66 le ciel et la terre. Done voil^ toutes 


mes apparences chang^es en r^alit^s. II y a 
des corps : cela est d^montr^ en toute rigueur, 
1b, foy suppos^e." We can understand his in- 
dignation and astonishment at hearing a bolder 
thinker reject his faith as a silly compromise ; 
as, at best, the idea of a realism he could not 
prove ; and, with a merciless logic, force a kin- 
dred idealism to destroy the absolute existence 
of matter. The aged philosopher stormed at his 
young antagonist, and, in his wrath, so aggra- 
vated his illness, that in a few days he was no 
more. He was seventy-seven years of age, 
and in a life of peculiar piety had become not 
unworthy, « no longer in a glass darkly, but 
face to face," to behold those mysteries he had 
dreamed on so long. Malebranche died on 
the 13th of October, 1715. 

In this second excursion abroad, Mr. Berke- 
ley employed upward of four years ; and, be- 
sides all those places which are usually visited 
by travellers in what was called the grand 
tour, his curiosity carried him to some that are 
less frequented. In particular, he travelled 


over Apulia (from which he wrote an accu- 
rate and entertaining account of the tarantula 
to Dr. Preind), Calabria, and the whole Island 
of Sicily. This last country engaged his at* 
tention so strongly, that he had, with great in- 
dustry, compiled very considerable materials 
for a natural history of the island ; but, by an 
unfortunate accident, these, together with a 
journal of his transactions there, were lost in 
the passage to Naples ; nor could he be pre- 
vailed upon afterward to recollect and com- 
mit those curious particulars again to paper. 
What an injury the literary world has sus- 
tained by this mischance, may in part be col- 
lected from the specimen he has left of his 
talent for lively description, in his letter to Mr. 
Pope, concerning the island of Inarime (now 
Ischia, in the bay of Naples), dated Naples, 
22d of October, 1717, and in another from 
the same city to Dr. Arbuthnot, giving an ac- 
count of an eruption of Mount Vesuvius, which 
he had the good fortune to have more than one 
opportunity of examining very minutely. 


We are happy in being able to present these 
two letters to our readers, and we give them 
in their order : 

"Naples, 22d of October, 1717, N. S. 

"1 have long had it in my thoughts to trou- 
ble you with a letter, but was discouraged for 
want of something that I could think worthy 
sending fifteen hundred miles. Italy is such 
an exhausted subject, that I dare say you would 
easily forgive my saying nothing of it ; and 
the imagination of a poet is a thing so nice 
and delicate, that it is no easy matter to find 
out images capable of giving pleasure to one 
of the few who (in any age) have come up 
to that character. I am, nevertheless, lately 
returned from an island, where I passed three 
or four months, which, were it set out in its 
true colors, might, methinks, amuse you agree- 
ably enough for a minute or two. The island 
Inarime is an epitome of the whole earth, con- 
taining, within the compass of eighteen miles, 
a wonderful variety of hills, vales, ra^^ged 
rocks, fruitful plains, and barren mountains, 


all thrown together in a most romantic con- 
fusion. The air is, in the hottest season, con- 
stantly refreshed by cool breeze from the sea. 
The vales produce excellent wheat and Indian 
corn, but are mostly covered with vineyards, 
intermixed with fruit trees : besides the com- 
mon kinds, as cherries, apricots, peaches, &c., 
they produce oranges, limes, almonds, pome- 
granates, figs, wa>termelons, and many other 
fruits, unknown to our climates, which lie 
everywhere open to the passenger. The hills 
are the greater part covered to the top with 
vines, some with chestnut groves, and others 
with thickets of myrtle and lentiscus. The 
fields in the northern side are divided by 
hedge-rows of myrtle. Several fountains and 
rivulets add to the beauty of this landscape, 
which is likewise set oflf by the variety of some 
. barren spots and naked rocks. But that which 
crowns the scene is a large mountain, rising 
out of the middle of the island (once a terrible 
volcano, by the ancients called Mons Epomeus). 
Its lower parts are adorned with vines and 


other fruits. The middle affords pasture to 
flocks of goats and sheep ; and the top is a 
sandy, pointed rock, from which you have the 
finest prospect in the world, surveying at one 
view, beside several pleasant islands lying at 
your feet, a tract of Italy about three hundred 
miles in length, from the promontory of An- 
tium to the Cape of Palinurus; the greater 
part of which hath been suog by Homer and 
Virgil, as making a considerable part of the 
travels and adventures of their two heroes. 
The islands Caprea, Prochyta, and Parthenope, 
together with Cejeta, Cumae, Monte Miseno, 
the habitations of Circe, the Syrens, and the 
Laestrigones, the bay of Naples, the prom- 
ontory of Minerva, and the whole Campagna 
Felice, make but a part of this noble land- 
scape, which would demand an imagination as 
warm, and numbers as flowing as your own,, 
to describe it. The inhabitants of this deli- 
cious isle, as they are without riches and 
honors, so they are without the vices and 
follies that attend them ; and were they but 


as much strangers to revenge as they are to 
avarice and an^bition, they might in fact an- 
swer the poetical notions of the golden ago» 
But they have got, as an alloy to their happi- 
ness, an ill habit of murdering one another on 
slight offences. We had an instance of this 
the second night after our arrival, a youth of 
eighteen being shot dead by our door. And 
yet, by the sole secret of minding our own 
business, we found a means of living securely 
among these dangerous people. 

" Would you know how we pass the time at 
Naples? Our chief entertainment is the 
devotion of our neighbors ; beside the gaiety 
of their churches (where folks go to see what 
they call una Bella devozionCy i. e., a sort of re- 
ligious opera), they make fireworks almost 
every week, out of devotion ; the streets are 
often hung with arras, out of devotion ; and 
(what is more strange) the ladies invite gen- 
tlemen to their houses, and treat them with 
music and sweetmeats, out of devotion ; in a 

word, were it not for this devotion of its 



inhabitants, Naples would have little else to 
recommend it beside the air and situation. 
Learning is in no very thriving state here, 
as indeed nowhere else in Italy; however, 
among many pretenders some men of taste 
are to be met with. A friend of mine told 
me, not long since, that being to visit Salvini 
at Florence, he found him reading your Ho- 
mer : he liked the notes extremely, and could 
^nd no other fault with the version but that 
he thought it approached a paraphrase, which 
shows him not to be sufficiently acquainted 
with our language. 1 wish you health to go 
on with that noble work ; and when you have 
that, I need not wish you success. You will 
do me the justice to believe, that whatever 
relates to your welfare is sincerely wished by 
"Yours, &c., G. Berkeley." 

The next letter, addressed to Dr. Arbuth- 
not, is even more interesting than the last : 

" 17th AprU, 1717. 

" With much difficulty I reached the top of 


Mount Vesuvius, in vhich I saw a vast aper- 
ture full of smoke, which hindered the seeing 
its depth and figure. I heard within that 
horrid gulf certain odd sounds, which seemed 
to proceed from the belly of the mountain ; a 
sort of murmuring, sighing, throbbing, churn- 
ing, dashing, as it were, of waves, and be- 
tween whiles a noise like that of thunder or 
cannon, wMch was constantly attended with a 
clattering like that of tiles falling from the . 
tops of houses on the streets. Sometimes, as 
the wind changed, the smoke grew thinner, 
discovering a very ruddy flame, and the jaws 
of the pan or crater streaked with red and 
several shades of yellow. After an hour's 
stay, the smoke being moved by the wind, 
gave us short and partial -prospects of the 
great hollow, in the flat bottom of which I 
could discern two furnaces almost contiguous : 
that on the left, seeming about three yards in 
diameter, glowed with red flame, and threw 
up red-hot stones with a hideous noise, which, 
as they fell back, caused the fore-mentioned 


clattering. 8th of May, in the morning, I 
ascended to the top of Vesuvius a second 
time, and found a diflferent face of things. 
The smoke ascending upright gave a full pros- 
pect of the crater, which, as I could judge, is 
about a mile in circumference, and a hundred 

. yards deep. A conical mount had been 
formed since my last visit, in the middle of 
the bottom. This mount, I could see, was 

^ made of the stones thrown up and fallen back 
agaiu into the crater. In this new hill re- 
mained the two mounts or furnaces already 
mentioned. That on our left was in the vortex 
of the hill which it had formed round it, and 
raged more violently than before, throwing 
up every three of four minutes,Vith a dread- 
ful bellowing, a vast number of red-hot 
stones, sometimes in appearance above a thou- 
sand, and at least three thousand feet higher 
than my head, as I stood upon the brink ; but 
there being little or no wind, they fell back 
perpendicularly into the crater, increasing the 
conical hill. The other mouth, to the right, 


was lower in the side of the same new-formed 
hill. I could discern it to be filled with red- 
hot liquid matter, like that in the furnace of 
a glass-house, which raged and wrought as 
the waves of the sea, causing a short abrupt 
noise, like what may be imagined to proceed 
from a sea of quicksilver dashing among 
uneven rocks. This stuff would sometimes 
spew over and run down the convex side of 
the conical hill, and appearing at first red- 
hot, it changed color and hardened as it 
cooled, showing the first rudiments of an 
eruption, or, if I may say so, an eruption in 

« Had the wind driven in our faces, we had 
been in no small danger of stifling by the 
sulphurous smoke, or being knocked on the 
head by lumps of molten minerals, which we 
saw had sometimes fallen on the brink of the 
crater, upon those shots from the gulf at bot- 
tom. But as the wind was favorable, I had an 
opportunity to survey this odd scene for abc^re 
an hour and a half together — during which it 


was very observable that all the volleys of 
smoke, flame, and burning stones, came only 
out of the hole to our left, while the liquid 
stujBf in the other mouth wrought and over- 
flowed, as hath been already described. 5th 
of June, after a horrid noise, the mountain 
was seen (at Naples) to spew a little out of 
the crater ; the same continued the 6th. The 
7th, nothing was observed till within two 
hours of night, when it began a hideous bel- 
lowing, which continued all that night, and 
the next day till noon, causing the windows, 
and, as some affirm, the very houses in Naples, 
to shake. From that time it spewed vast 
quantities of molten stufl: to the south, which 
streamed down the side of the mountain like a 
great pot boiling over. This evening I re- 
turned from a voyage through Apulia, and 
was surprised, passing by the north side of 
the mountain, to see a great quantity of ruddy 
smoke lie along a huge tract of sky over the 
rifer of molten stuff, which was itself out of 
sight. The 9th, Vesuvius raged less vio- 


lently: that night we saw, from Naples, a 
column of. fire shoot, between whiles, ont of 
its smnmit. The 10th, when we thought all 
would have been over, the mountain grew 
very outrageous again, roaring and groaning 
most dreadfully. You cannot form a juster 
idea of this noise, in the most violent fits of it, 
than by imagining a mixed sound, made up 
of the raging of a tempest, the murmur of a 
troubled sea, and the roaring of thunder and 
artillery, confused all together. It was very 
terrible, as we heard it in the further end 
of Naples, at the distance of above twelve 
miles. This moved my curiosity to approach 
the mountain. Three or four of us got into a 
boat, and were set ashore at Torre del Greco, 
a town situate at the foot of Vesuvius, to the 
southwest, whence we rode four or five miles 
before we came to the burning river, which 
was about midnight. The roaring of the vol- 
cano grew exceedingly loud and horrible as 
we approached. I observed a mixture of 
colors in the cloud over the crater^green, 


yellow, red, and blue : there was likewise a 
ruddy, dismal light, in the air over that tract 
of land where the burning river flowed ; ashes 
continually showered on us all the way from 
the sea-coast ; all which circumstances, set oS 
and augmented by the horror and silence of 
the night, made a scene the most uncommon 
and astonishing I ever saw; which grew still 
more extraordinary as we came nearer the 
stream. Imagine a vast torrent of liquid fire 
rolling from the top down the side of the 
mountain, and with irresistible fury bearing 
down and consuming vines, olives, fig trees, 
houses — :in a word, everything that stood in 
its way. This mighty flood divided into dif- 
ferent channels, according to the inequalities 
of the mountain; the largest stream seemed 
half a mile broad, at least, and five miles long. 
The nature and consistence of these burning 
torrents hath been described with so much ex- 
actness and truth by Borellus, in his Latin 
treatise of Mount ^tna, that I need say noth- 
ing of itr I walked so far before my compan- 


ions, up the mountain, along the side of the 
river of fire, that I was obliged to retire in 
great haste, the sulphurous steam having sur- 
prised me and almost taken away my breath. 
During our return, which was about three 
o'clock in the morning, we constantly heard 
the murmur and groaning of the mountain, 
which, between whiles, would burst out into 
louder peals, throwing up huge spouts of fire 
and burning stones, which, falling down again, 
resembled the stars in our rockets. Some^ 
times I observed two, at others, three distinct 
columns of flame, and sometimes one vast one 
that seemed to fill the whole crater. These 
burning columns and the fiery stones seemed 
to be shot a thousand feet perpendicular 
above the summit of the volcano. The 11th, 
at night, I observed it, from a terrace at 
Naples, to throw up incessantly a vast body 
of fire and great stones to a surprising height. 
The 12th, in the morning, it darkened the sun 
with ashes and smoke, causing a sort of eclipse. 
Horrid bello wings, this and the foregoing day. 


were heard at Naples, whither part of the 
ashes also reached. At night I observed it 
throwing up flame, as on the 11th. On the 
13th, the wind changing, we saw a pillar of 
black smoke shot upright to a prodigious 
height. At night I observed the mount cast 
up fire as before, though not so distinctly, be- 
cause of the smoke. The 14th, a thick black 
cloud hid the mountain from Naples. The 
15th, in the morning, the court and walls of 
our house were covered with ashes. The 16th, 
the smoke was driven by a westerly wind from 
the town to the opposite side of the mountain. 
The 17th, the smoke appeared much dimin- 
ished, fat and greasy. The 18th, the whole 
appearance ended ; the mountain remaining 
perfectly quiet, without any visible smoke or 
flame. A gentleman of my acquaintance, 
whose window looked toward Vesuvius, as- 
sured me that he observed several flashes, as 
it were of lightning, issue out of the mouth of 
the volcano. 
<< It is not worth while to trouble you with 


the conjectures I have formed concerning the 
cause of these phenomena, from what I have 
observed in the Lacus Amsancti, the Solfatara, 
etc., as well as in Mount Vesuvius. One thing 
I may venture to say, that I saw the fluid mat- 
ter rise out of the centre of the bottom of the 
crater, out of the very middle of the mountain ; 
contrary to what Borellus imagines, whose 
method of explaining the eruption of a vol- 
cano, by an inflexed syphon and the rules of 
hydrostatics, is likewise inconsistent with the 
•torrent's flowing down from the very vertex 
of the mountain. I have not seen the crater 
since the eruption, but design to visit it again 
.before I leave Naples. I doubt there is noth- 
ing in this worth showing the Society ; as to 
that, you will use your discretion. 

Gr. Beekbley." 



A treatise on motion — How mnch its si>eculations are 
worth — Once more in London — Changes among old 
friends — The South Sea bubble — ^Law, the Scotch ad- 
venturer — Ingratiates himself with the French "King 
— ^Magnificent schemes — South Sea Company — Stock- 
jobbing on a large scale — Golden visions — The Eng- 
lish nation run mad— "What wise ones did with their 
stock — The bubble bursts — Consequences thereof— Mr. 
Berkeley becomes more practical than common — An 
Essay for the good of his country — A few passages not 
over complimentary. 

O HORTLY before Mr. Berkeley's return to 
^^ England, he published at Lyons, for the 
French Academy of Science, a Latin treatise 
upon motion. It is remarkable that it does 
not entangle the subject with his peculiar 
metaphysics. It refers the efficient cause of 
motion to the supreme mind or spirit; insists 
that absolute motion, independent of sensible 
objects, like absolute space, is a mere fancy, 
and defines motion as the successive existence 


of bodies in various places. In his meta- 
physics he would analyze motion into the 
succession of sensations suggested to us in things 
perceived^ and as this account of it would be 
unintelligible without understanding his phil- 
osophy, he probably avoided it on purpose. 
The treatise De Motu is short, but it contains 
some valuable observations upon the proper 
limits of the different sciences. 

In 1721, he was again in London society. 
Of the friends he had made in youth, Addison, 
before this, had "shown how a Christian 
could die ;" and Swift was fretting in banish- 
ment in Ireland ; but Steele remained ; Pope 
was in the zenith of his fame, and Arbuthnot 
was mocking science in the first book of 
Scriblerus. In the maturity of life, when 
envy begins to quail before genius, with Euro- 
pean fame, with a taste cultivated by study 
and experience, with a person of singular 
beauty and dignity^ with a charm of manner 
that sprang from the sweetness of his disposi- 
tion, and with the undefinable authority of a 


virtuous character, Berkeley was now secure 
of many friends and admirers. For the first 
time he now wrote on contemporaneous affairs. 
The South Sea bubble had burst, and the na- 
tion was seeking amends for its folly in a 
frantic cry for vengeance. 

As all of our readers may not be familiar 
with the history of this singular delusion, we 
must stop to give some account of it. 

In 1717, a Scotch adventurer, named Law, 
fled to Prance, to evade the consequences of a 
duel, and there he employed his remarkable 
financial abilities in projecting a company for 
the purpose of carrying on trade with the 
territories adjacent to the Mississippi river. 
In 1719 the French monarch incorporated the 
French, India and China Companies, of one 
of which Law was the President, giving them 
peculiar privileges and monopolies, on condi- 
tion that they would undertake the payment 
of the State bills. There was suddenly an 
immense advance in the shares of th^ com- 
pany, and the success of the scheme was most 


extraordinary. The Prench government was 
relieved of all its pecuniary difficulties ; many 
of the nobility and courtiers became immense- 
ly rich ; Law rose so high in the estimation, 
both of the court and the people, that he was 
admitted to the privy council, and appointed 
comptroller-general of the finances of Prance. 

The extraordinary success of this experi- 
ment suggested to the English ministry the 
expediency of attempting to achieve the same 
magnificent results, by means of an obscure 
and languishing association, which had been 
established in 1711, termed the South Sea 
Company. They conceived the idea of invest- 
ing this company with certain important 
privileges, and then making it agree to liqui- 
date the national debt, which was then re- 
garded by the British people as an intolerable 
burden. Aislabie, the chancellor of the ex* 
chequer, lords Stanhope and Sunderland, and 
many other leading statesmen, viewed the 
project with special favor. 

Its chief opponent was the sagacious and 


penetrating Sir Robert Walpole, who in May, 
1715, had succeeded the Earl of Halifax as 
first lord commissioner of the treasury. At 
the period of which we now speak he was not 
a member of the ministry, but he deservedly 
wielded a great influence in the house, in con- 
sequence of his superior ability and experi- 
ence. The safer and wiser heads in the legis- 
lature perceived the danger which would 
eventually ensue from the execution of the 
project, but, in spite of all opposition, the bill 
became a law ; it received the royal sanction, 
and the enterprise was heralded forth to the 
world by men in high places, as one deserving 
of the utmost confidence and esteem. 

Then ensued one of the most remarkable 
spectacles recorded in history. Wearied with 
political strife and party feuds, a prodigious 
reaction took place in the public mind in favor 
of financial excitement and speculation. The 
rage for dealing in South Sea shares became 
intense and universal. In a few weeks the 
stock rose to above a thousand per cent. It 


is true, indeed, that the dealers and buyers 
knew very little in reference to the real re- 
sources, capital, and securities of the company, 
but they engaged in the purchase and the sale 
of stock because every one declared that such 
a course would soon lead to the possession of 
immense wealth, and that millions were to be 
won by those who boldly embraced the golden 
opportunity. Everything else, therefore, was 
for the time forgotten ; throughout the three 
kingdoms, but especially in London, stock- 
jobbing became the sole pursuit of all classes 
and parties : of Whigs and Tories, of High 
Church and Low Church, of Dissenters and 
Freethinkers, of the noble and the vulgar, of 
the learned and the ignorant. All these served 
to constitute a tumultuous, excited, and san- 
guine multitude, whose existence seemed to be 
absorbed in the singular delirium which had 
thrown its potent spell over the public mind. 

Exchange alley and Threadneedle street, 
the great head-quarters of the company, were 
crowded from morning till night by eager 


gamblers, of every description and condition. 
Elegant women, superbly dressed, elbowed 
their way bravely through the throng, to at- 
tain the object of their wishes, and possess 
themselves of the inestimable and talismanic 
scrip. The highway in the vicinity was ob- 
structed by the brilliant equipages of princes, 
dukes, and prelates, adorned with illustrious 
arms and coronets, whose owners eagerly 
joined the crowd, and were lost in its tumult- 
uous current. Hundreds invested all they 
possessed in the purchase of shares ; others 
sold everything, and bought stock with the 
proceeds. Some pledged rights in exchange 
for stock, of which they held only the expec- 
tancy of a future and contingent interest. 
Every conceivable expedient was adopted to 
raise money Tor the purpose of investment. 

At the same time, the most artful and in- 
sidious methods were contrived by the direct- 
ors of the company, to keep up the popular 
enthusiasm. Vast and gorgeous visions of the 
opulence to be derived from the mines of 


Mexico and Peru, through the connection 
which was alleged to exist between them and 
the operations of the company, were depicted 
before the greedy and deluded eyes of the 
nation. It was asserted that the company 
possessed a capital of a hundred and ten mil- 
lion pounds, together with the interest of the 
national debt, which had been transferred by 
government to the control and credit of the 
company ; and they opened four new subscrip- 
tions, which increased the amount of capital, 
as was asserted, to the prodigious sum of two 
hundred and ninety-five million pounds ! 

Nor did the evil terminate there. The 
nation having once become insane with the 
mania for speculation, were not satisfied with 
gambling in one way, but a host of other 
companies were quickly established for the 
purpose of speculation in every possible shape. 
In three months the number of these financial 
bubbles exceeded a hundred, and their aggre- 
gate stock was said to amount to five hundred 
million pounds. They referred to every pos- 


sible subject, some of them being the most 
impracticable and absurd which could be 

Among the list were companies for insuring 
the fortunes of minors, for securing against 
thieves and robbers, for insuring marriages 
against divorce, for obtaining pensions for 
widows, for trading to the Oronoko, for im- 
proving the breed of horses, for founding 
Arcadian colonies, for making engines to fly 
in the air, for purchasing lands in Pennsyl- 
vania, for curing gout and stone, for insu- 
rance against small-pox, for fabricating air- 
pumps for the brain, for making boards of 
sawdust, and for casting nativities. Some 
even went so far as to form a company, the 
very purposes of which were yet unknown, 
« for an undertaking which shall in due time 
be revealed." Instances were frequently 
known in which several persons hired an 
office for a single day, opened a subscription 
book in the morning, took a small deposite on 
the shares, and after nightfall closed their 


shop, and dived utterly beyond soundings, 
carrying away with them a large sum of 
money. The whole nation were dancing in a 
jubilee of insane hilarity and enthusiasm."* 

Although so many persons were foolish 
enough to invest their money in this wild 
scheme, some awoke from their delusion in 
time to sell out their stock before the crash 
came. At length the fatal crisis arrived; 
thousands were ruined in a moment, and mis- 
ery, and wretchedness, and despair filled the 

The unprincipled directors of the South 
Sea enterprise became objects of public detes- 
tation, and as many as could be found were 
seized, and their property confiscated. Par- 
liament took up the business, and even a 
slight investigation disclosed the fraud and 
villany of which the chief actors had been 

• " Smucker's History of the Four Georges,'' p. 47, etc. 
A still ftiller account of the " Great Mississippi Bubble" 
will be found in Washington Irving's works (Putnam's 
edition), in the same volume with "Wolfert's Eoost," and 
other sketches. 


guilty. The ministry was broken up, and in 
April, 1721, a new one was formed under the 
direction of Sir Robert Walpole. Lord Stan- 
hope, who had been a member of the Cabinet 
before, was so overcome by transports of rage 
at the charges brought against him, that he 
suddenly expired, greatly to the distress of 
the king. 

In the midst of all this excitement and 
wretchedness, Mr. Berkeley forgot for a sea- 
son, his philosophical speculations, and set 
himself vigorously at work to do what he 
could to relieve the miseries of his country. 
With this view he published, in 1721, "An 
Essay toward preventing the Ruin of Great 
Britain."* It is a curious production, and 
reads like a chapter from The Republic upon 
the affairs of England. The " atheistical love 
of private gain," breaking out in every form 
of luxury and selfishness, and reducing the 
State to a chaos of greedy individuals, is to 

• The Essay is published in Bishop Berkeley's works 
(London, Wrijght's edition), voL 1, p. 183. 


be neutralized by " public spirit," to be gen- 
erated by governmental regulation of all the 
affairs of life. The " State" is to confine the 
industry and energies of its subjects to noble 
ends; to promote virtue by direct rewards; 
to penetrate into families and mould their 
habits; to cast into its own forms domestic 

A glance at society ought to have told 
Berkeley that the only possible depositories 
of this tremendous power — justifiable when 
governments are necessarily infinitely wiser, 
better, and more judicious than their subjects, 
but not till then — were scarcely fitted for the 
trust. The Aislabies, the Craggs, the Sun- 
derlands, the Walpoles, were sorry represen- 
tatives of those philosophers to whose perfect 
wisdom, prudence, and virtue, Plato delegated 
his all-controlling omnipotenoe of government. 

Although not very complimentary to the 
politicians of his day, we shall end the chap- 
ter with the closing paragraph of Mr. Berke- 
ley's famous Essay. 


"Little can be hoped if we consider the 
corrupt degenerate age we live in. I know it 
is an old folly to make peevish complaints of 
the times, and charge the common failures of - 
human nature on a particular age. One may 
nevertheless venture to affirm, that the pres- 
ent hath brought forth new and portentous 
villanies, not to be paralled in our own or 
any other history. We have been long pre- 
paring for some great catastrophe. Vice and 
villany have by degrees grown reputable 
among us; our infidels have passed for fine 
gentlemen, and our venal traitors for men of 
sense, who knew the world. We have made 
a jest of public spirit, and cancelled all re- 
spect for whatever our laws and religion 
repute sacred; The old English modesty is 
quite worn oflF, and instead of blushing for 
our crimes, we are ashamed only of piety and 
virtue. In short, other nations have been 
wicked, but we are the first who have been 
wicked upon principle. 

"The truth is, our symptoms are so bad, 

bebkelet's essat. 97 

that notwithstanding all the care and vigi- 
lance of the legislature, it is to be feared the 
final period of our state approaches. Strong 
constitutions, whether politic or natural, do 
not feel light disorders ; but when they are 
sensibly affected, the distemper is for the most 
part violent and of an ill prognostic. Free 
governments like our own were planted by the 
Goths in most parts of Europe; and though 
we all know what they are come to, yet we 
seem disposed rather to follow their example 
than to profit by it. 

" Whether it be the order of things that civil 
states should have, like natural products, their 
several periods of growth, perfection and decay, 
or whether it be an effect, as seems more prob- 
able, of human folly, that as industry produces 
wealth, so wealth should produce vice, and 
vice ruin ; God grant the time be not near when 
men shall say, < This island was once inhabited 
by a religious, brave, sincere people, of plain 
uncorrupt manners, respecting inbred worth 

rather than titles and appearances ; asserters 


of liberty, lovers of their country, jealous of 
their own rights, and' unwilling to infringe 
the rights of others; improvers of learning 
and useful arts, enemies to luxury, tender of 
other men's lives and. prodigal of their own ; 
inferior in nothing to the old Greeks or 
Eomans, and superior to each of those people 
in the perfections of the other/ Such were 
our ancestors during their rise and greatness ; 
but they degenerated, grew servile flatterers 
of men in power, adopted epicurean notions, 
became venal, corrupt, injurious, which drew 
upon them the hatred of God and occasioned 
their final ruin." 



Making friends— His taste for architecture leads to pre- 
ferment — Goes to Ireland as the Duke of Grafton's 
Chaplain — Renews his intimacy with Swift — Condi- 
tion of Ireland — Drapier's Letters — Marriage with 
Stella — "Vanessa's Bower" — How Berkeley's fortune 
was increased — Unpopularity of King George's gfov- 
ernment — The Pretender attempts to seize the crown 
—Bishop Atterbury's conspiracies — His arrest and 
condemnation — Troublesome till the end — His fiire- 
weU letter to Pope — Theological controversiea— Giv- 
ing ourselves unto prayer. 

^R. BERKELEY had always been, an 
\ agreeable man in society, but after the 
advantages of foreign travel which he had 
enjoyed, he became more popular than ever, 
and found a ready access to the best society 
in London. 

He was introduced by Mr. Pope to Lord 
Burlington, who took a great fancy to him on ' 
account of his taste for architecture, which 
our philosopher had made his particular study 


during his residence in Italy. This acquaint- 
ance was the stepping-stone to a preferment. 
Lord Burlington recommended him so highly 
to the Duke of Grafton, Lord Lieutenant of 
Lreland, that he appointed him one of his 
chaplains, and took him over in 1721. About 
this time the degrees of Bachelor and Doctor 
of Divinity were conferred upon him. 

Upon returning to Ireland Mr. Berkeley 
renewed his intimacy with Dean Swift, who 
was taking advantage of the wrongs under 
which the Irish people were suffering to 
avenge himself for the neglect which had 
been shown to himself, and to exhibit to the 
best advantage his own abilities as a party 
writer. "The commercial legislation of the 
British Parliament toward that country" was 
a fitting and popular subject for complaint. 
The Irish woollen trade had been destroyed, 
Irish merchants were excluded from the mo- 
nopolies which then formed the foreign trade 
of England, and Irish ship-owners were ex- 
cepted from the navigation acts, which then 


confined the coasting and colonial commerce 
of Great Britain to native vessels. Already, 
too, the injuries inflicted by the penal code 
were beginning to appear in a weak, insolent, 
and rapacious aristocracy — cut oflF from the 
people, void of real strength, and therefore 
despised by the English government — and in a 
degraded and hopeless commonalty, unworthy 
of the name of a nation. 

The Anglo-Irish colony was in sullen dis- 
content at repeated instances of contumely, at 
the restrictions of its commerce, and at the 
distribution of all patronage, when from the 
deanery of St. Patrick's issued a denunciation 
of its grievances in a pamphlet, entitled A 
Friyposdfor the Use of Irish Manufactures. It 
circulated extensively, and soon attracted the 
indignation of government. Chief Justice 
Whitshed, a convenient instrument of oppres- 
sion, was directed to visit the printer with 
especial vengeance. The presentment of the 
grand jury, upon his indictment for libel, was 
published in all the papers, and a petty jury 


was packed to try him. But, although the 
Irish Scroggs appealed alike to their terroi 
and their sympathies, laid his hand on his 
heart and declared the Pretender was in the 
book, and sent them back nine times to re- 
consider their verdict of not guilty, the pris- 
oner escaped his tender mercies. 

Instantly an anonymous but well-knowL 
pen retaliated, in scathing and merciless 
satire. The dean of St. Patrick's was once 
more a power in the state. In two or three 
years afterward he had convulsed a nation, 
shattered a government, and proclaimed the 
doctrine of Irish independence, in the well- 
known Drapier^s Letters, 

How Berkeley, at this period, kept up his 
correspondence with the castle's great antag- 
onist, does not appear, though we know they 
continued intimate friends. But the thread of 
life of these distinguished contrasts was fated 
to be woven in a melancholy history. Early 
in 1713 Swift had introduced Berkeley to 
Esther Vanhomrigh. She had already given 

swift's marriage with STELLA. 103 

her heart to that inscrutable genius, over the 
history of whose loves such a mystery hangs, 
but she proved that she never forgot his mild 
and pleasing friend. A year or two after 
Swift had settled in Ireland, she followed him 
there to feed a hopeless attachment. In vain 
he treated her with coolness and neglect; she 
clung to him with wild and impassioned devo- 
tion. At length Swift went through the form 
of marriage with Stella, and the virgin wife 
proved an insuperable bar to her rival. She 
lived at Cellbridge, tending a sick sister, 
brooding over a hopeless love, and as yet in- " 
formed by rumor only, that Cadenus could 
never marry her. At length suspense became 
intolerable, and she wrote to Stella to know 
her exact relations with the dean. Stella 
simply replied that she was the wife of Swift ; 
and, naturally indignant at his conduct, re- 
tired from his house, and left behind her her 
rival's letter. The rest is well known. Swift, 
in a fit of frenzy, broke into the house of the 
unhappy girl, glared at her with ferocious 


eyes, and, without uttering a word, flung her 
letter on the table, and she saw him no more. 
His victim did not long survive the agony of 
mingled indignation, despair, and unconquer- 
able love. The heart that was broken was 
not " brokenly to live on," and before many 
weeks there was no owner to "Vanessa's 
bower." Her will divided her fortune be- 
tween Berkeley and her cousin, Judge Mar- 
shal. It would appear that, since 1713, she 
had not met Swift's illustrious friend. Wo 
cannot conjecture whether the bequest was 
owing to his reputation, to her reminiscences, 
or because in her mind he was associated with 
the thoughts of happier days ; but it would bo 
pleasing to think that, while she lay on that 
melancholy death-bed, and Swift was far away 
in an agony of remorse, the presence of Berke- 
ley had soothed her feverish griefs, and his 
voice had told her of those places " where the 
weary are at rest."* 

• British Quarterly Review. 


Although we endeavor to confine ourselves 
closely to the personal career of the subject 
of the memoir, it adds to the interest of the 
narrative to mention, now and then, the con- 
dition of public affairs. 

The government of George the First had 
been rendered exceedingly unpopular by the 
disastrous results which followed the failure 
of the South Sea speculations, and his Majesty 
spent a good deal of time on the continent, 
in order to keep out of the way jof annoy- 
ances and mortifications which he had no wish 
to endure. 

Early in 1722, the Pretender to the throne, 
who had been living quietly at Rome, made 
another demonstration toward securing the 
sceptre of his ancestors, which occasioned no 
little alarm. With the assistance of the 
prime minister of Spain, a powerful arma- 
ment was fitted out, with which he sailed 
from Cadiz, but a terrible storm arose, and 
only two frigates were able to continue the 
voyage to Scotland. The three hundred Span- 


igh soldiers, who were joined by a few High- 
land clans, offered but a feeble resistance to 
the royal troops, and this ill-conducted enter- 
prise came to an end. 

When it was known at London that the 
fleet had sailed from Spain, all classes were 
filled with dismay, and a camp was formed in 
Hyde Park to protect the king and the city 
from danger. Prominent among the conspir- 
ators against the government was Dr. Francis 
Atterbury, Bishop of Rochester. Since the 
death of Queen Anne, he had been secretly 
engaged in plotting for the restoration of the 
Stuart race, and when the conspirators who 
were furthering the interests of the Pretender 
were arrested, they all confessed more or less, 
which increased the suspicions against him. 

Bishop Atterbury was accordingly commit- 
ted to the Tower, on the 24th of August, 
1722 ; and, in the March following, a bill was 
brought into the House of Commons for the 
infliction of pains and penalties upon the 
restless and ambitious prelate. 

atterbury's epistle to pope. 101 

A strong opposition was made to this in 
the House of Lords, and the Bishop pleaded 
his own cause with wonderful acuteness and 
dexterity. He was, however, deprived of his 
dignities, and banished from the kingdom. 
Some time was spent in Paris, in literary pur- 
suits, and in 1725 he was once more engaged 
in exciting discontent in the Highlands of 
Scotland. He died in 1731, and his body 
was privately buried in Westminster Abbey. 

Bishop Atterbury's style was easy and 
elegant, and his sermons are still greatly ad- 
mired. His letters to Pope breathed the 
utmost tenderness and affection. We cannot 
forbear .copying his farewell epistle to the 
poet, sent from the Tower, April 10th, 1723: 

"Dear Sir: — I thank you for all the in- 
stances of your friendship, both before and 
since my misfortunes ; a little time will com- 
plete them, and separate you and me forever. 
But in what part of the world soever I am, 
I will live mindful of your sincere kindness 
to me, and will please myself with the thought 


that I still live in your esteem and affection 
as much as ever I did, and that no accident 
of life, no distance of time or place, will 
alter you in that respect. It never can me, 
who have loved and valued you ever since I 
knew you, and shall not fail to do it when I 
am not allowed to tell you so, as the case will 
soon be. Give my faithful services to Dr. 
Arbuthnot, and thanks for what he sent me, 
which was much to the purpose, if anything 
can be said to the purpose in a case that is 
already determined. Let him know my de- 
fence will be such, that neither my friends 
need blush for me, nor will my enemies have 
great occasion to triumph, though sure of the 
victory. I shall want his advice before I go 
abroad, in many things ; but I question wheth- 
er I shall be permitted to see him or anybody 
but such as are absolutely necessary toward 
the despatch of my private affairs. If so, 
God bless you both ! and may no part of the 
ill fortune that attends me ever pursue either 
of you. I know not but I may call upon you 


at my hearing to say somewhat about my way 
of spending my time at the deanery, which 
did not seem calculated toward managing 
plots and conspiracies. But of ,that I shall 
consider. You and I have spent many hours 
together iipon much pleasanter subjects ; and, 
that I may preserve the old custom, I shall 
not part with you now till I have closed this 
letter with three lines of Milton, which you 
will, I know, readily and not without some 
degree of concern, apply to 

" Your affectionate, &c. 

" * Some natural tears he dropx>ed, but wiped them soon ; 
The world was all before him where to choose 
His place of rest, and Providence his guide.' " 

When the fear of foreign invasion had 
passed away, a spirited controversy arose in 
regard to the doctrine of the Trinity. The 
views of the Christian Church on this impor- 
tant subject were boldly assailed by Dr. Whis- 
ton in several elaborate publications. The 
University of Oxford then took hold of the 
matter, and in full convocation resolved that 


the solemn thanks of that body should be 
tendered to the Earl of Nottingham for his 
noble defence of the Catholic faith, contained 
in his answer to Professor Whiston. Being 
thus encouraged, this theologian and exegeti- 
cal statesman introduced a bill into the House 
of Peers for the suppression of blasphemy 
and profanity ; which enacted that whoever 
spoke or wrote against the being of a God, 
the divinity of Christ, and of the Holy Ghost, 
the doctrine of the Trinity, the truth of the 
Christian religion, or the inspiration of the 
Scriptures, should suffer imprisonment for an 
indefinite term, unless he renounced and ab- 
jured his errors. The bill further proceeded 
to give authority to all bishops and arch- 
bishops, within their respective jurisdiction, to 
summon any dissenting teacher, and require 
his subscription to a declaration of faith con- 
taining the preceding articles, and upon his 
refusing to subscribe, authorizing the prelate 
to deprive him of the benefits of the act of 


These proceedings were in keeping with the 
spirit of the times, but experience has proved 
that no enactment of law can make men 
sound in the faith. Rather let us all pray, as 
the Church has taught us : « Almighty and 
EVERLASTING GoD, who hast given unto us thy 
servants grace, by the confession of a true 
faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal 
Trinity, and in the power of the Divine Maj- 
esty to worship the Unity, we beseech thee 
that thou wouldst keep us steadfast in this 
faith, and evermore defend us from all adver- 
sities, who livest and reignest, one God, world 
without end. Amen, 



Mr. Berkeley appears in his character of a Christian 
Philanthropist — Condition of the British possessions 

■ in North America — A crippled Church Efforts for bet- 
ter things — Difficulties to be anticipated — Mr. Berke- 
ley made a Dean — An important scheme developed— 
The Summer Islands and the College of St. Paul's — 
Why this location was chosen — Shakespeare's " vext 
Bermoothes" — The living machinery for the work — 
Objections answered — " Westward the Star of Empire 
takes its way." 

''E have now reached a stage in Mr. 
Berkeley's history in which he ap- 
pears before the world as a Christian philan- 
thropist, who was not only ready to arrange 
a scheme of benevolence for others to carry 
into operation, but as one willing and anx- 
ious to go forth as the leader of the van, 
enduring privations and toil for the cause of 
his Divine Lord. 

At the time of which we are speaking, the 
British possessions in North America, extend- 


ing from the St. Lawrence to the tropics, hai 
risen to great importance, but the interests 
of the Christian religion had by no means 
kept pace with the advance of wealth and 

It is true, the Church of England had done 
something, but she was so hampered by the 
State, that no Bishops had been sent out to 
take the oversight of the clergy, to administer 
Confirmation, and to exercise discipline, and 
hence she failed to accomplish much good^ 
and she was receiving a constant rebuke in 
the zealous labors of the missionaries of Pa* 
pal Rome, who, in the French and Spanish 
colonies, were rearing up their religious insti- 
tutions, and putting forth every effort te 
inculcate their peculiar views. 

Mr. Berkeley had long thought of all this 
with regret and mortification, and he resolved, 
by God's help, to do what he could to promote 
the growth of the feeble scion of the Church 
whiah had been planted in the New World. 
The idea that the Bishop of London, in h&i 



distant see, could take the spiritual oversight 
of the scattered flocks on the other side of 
the Atlantic, was too absurd to be thought of. 
The Church in the colonies must no longer be 
left in this crippled condition. 

Mr. Berkeley was too wise a man not to 
anticipate much opposition to any project in 
that direction, or to expect for it a speedy or 
brilliant accomplishment. He well knew that 
he would have to encounter the English dis- 
like to speculative measures, the antagonism 
of vested interests in the Church of England, 
the apathy or distrust of a Parliament led by 
Walpole, the detraction which carps at genius 
it cannot comprehend. He knew further, that 
the only chance of rooting the Church deeply 
in America, was to establish an eflScient body 
of colonial clergy, and to connect with it 
a powerful corps of native American mis- 

The end, therefore, was only to be reached 
by slow degrees, and after a long lapse of 
time, and with true penetration, he saw the 


means in a fitting system of education. Could 
proper colleges be founded, in which a suflS- 
cient number of the colonial youth might be 
brought up for the ministry, and could semi- 
naries for rearing native American mission- 
aries be united to them, he thought the seed 
of the Church which he loved might be sown, 
and would germinate and grow in strength. 

But all depended on the beginnings of the 
system ; upon the first planting of the sacred 
nursery. He resolved to establish the first 
college himself, to become its President, and 
to collect there a few friends as its Fellows ; 
and, far away under other suns, and amidst 
unknown races, to dedicate his genius and 
devote his life to the task of sowing the seed 
of the Church. 

In 1724, he received from the Duke of 
Grafton the rich preferment of the Deanery 
of Derry. A story is told that Lord Galway 
objected to the appointment, because the " Ser- 
mons on Passive Obedience" were Jacobite 
in principle, and that Berkeley's pupil, Samuel 


Molyneux, the son of Locke's distinguished 
friend, having influence with the future Queen 
Caroline, refuted the charge by giving her the 
book to read, and presented to her the emi- 
nent author. But neither dignity nor riches 
stayed Berkeley for an instant from endeav- 
oring to mature the noble plan he had formed. 
For about three years he had been carefully 
studying American society, seeking for a site 
for his intended college, and thinking on the 
most likely source for its endowment. At 
length his scheme was developed in a short 
prospectus, published about the close of 1725. 

As Bishop Berkeley's works are rarely to 
be met with, and cannot be obtained without 
some trouble, many of our readers will thank 
us for allowing him to plead his own case. 
His ^^ Proposal for the better supplying of 
Churches in our foreign plantations^ and for Con^ 
verting the savage Americans to Christianity ^^^ 
is too long to be inserted entire, but we will 
give the most interesting portions of it. 

After referring to the ineflBiciency of the 


Church in the colonies, and the few and feeble 
attempts which had been made to convert the 
savage races, and contrasting them with the 
surprising energy exhibited by the Eomanists, 
he goes on to sketch the outlines of a Colonial 
Church, to be linked to the Church in Eng- 
land by the ties of common doctrines, disci- 
pline and worship, to be supplied with clergy 
from colleges established on American soil, 
and supported by missionaries of American 

The first of these institutions, he proposed, 
should be established by charter in the Island 
of Bermuda, and be called the College of St. 
Paul's. His reasons for this selection are 
thus stated. " It will not be amiss to insert 
here an observation I remember to have seen 
in an abstract of the proceedings, etc., an- 
nexed to the Dean of Canterbury's sermon 
before the Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospel in Foreign Parts, that the savage In- 
dians who live on the continent will not suffer 
their children to learn English or Dutch, lest 


they should be debauched by conversing with 
their European neighbors, which is a melan- 
choly but strong confirmation of the truth of 
what hath been now advanced. A general 
intercourse and correspondence with all the 
English colonies, both on the islands and on 
the continent, and with other parts of Amer- 
ica, hath been before laid down as a necessary 
circumstance, the reason whereof is very evi- 
dent. But this circumstance is hardly to be 
found ; for on the continent, where there are 
neither inns nor carriages, nor bridges over 
the rivers, there is no travelling by land be- 
tween distant places; and the English set- 
tlements are reputed to extend along the 
sea-coast for the space of fifteen hundred 
miles. It is, therefore, plain, there can be no 
<5onvenient communication between them other- 
wise than by sea ; no advantage, therefore, in 
this point can be gained by settling on the 

" There is another consideration, which equal- 
ly regards the continent and islands, that the 


general course of trade and correspondence lies 
from all those colonies to Great Britain alone; 
whereas, for our present purpose, it would be 
necessary to pitch upon a place, if such could 
be found, which maintains a constant inter- 
course with all the other colonies, and whose 
commerce lies chiefly or altogether (not in 
Europe, but) in America. 

" There is but one spot I can find to which 
this circumstance agrees, and that is the isles 
of Bermuda, otherwise called the Summer 
Islands. These having no rich commodity or 
manufacture, such as sugar, tobacco, or the 
like, wherewithal to trade to England, are 
obliged to become carriers for America, as 
the Dutch are for Europe. The Bermudans 
are excellent ship-wrights and sailors, and 
have a great number of very good sloops, 
which are always passing and repassing from 
all parts of America. They drive a constant 
trade to the islands of Jamaica, Barba- 
does, Antigua, etc., with butter, onions, cab- 
bages, and other roots and vegetables, which 


tkey have in great plenty and perfection. 
They have also some small manufactures of 
jfMners' work and matting, which they export 
toti the plantations on the continent. Hence, 
Bermudan sloops are oftener seen in the ports 
q£ America than any other. And, indeed, by 
Ibe best information I could get, it appears 
they are the only people of all the British 
ptentations who hold a general correspon- 
ience with the rest. 

** And as the commerce of Bermuda renders 
ik a very fit place wherein to erect a seminary, 
io likewise doth its situation, in being placed 
between our plantations on the continent and 
"Uiose on the isles, so as equally to respect 
hoth ; to which may be added, that it lies in 
tiie way of vessels passing from America to 
Gxeat Britain; all which makes it plain that 
tbe youth to be educated in a seminary placed 
ia the Summer Islands, would have frequent 
opportunities of going thither and correspond- 
ing with their friends. It must, indeed, be 
owned, that some will be obliged to go a long 


way to any one place, which we suppose 
resorted to from all parts of our plantations ; 
but if we were to look out a spot the nearest 
approaching to an equal distance from all the 
rest, I believe it would be found to be Ber- 
muda. It remains that we see whether it en- 
joys the other qualities or conditions laid 
down as well as this. The Summer Islands* 
are situated near the latitude of thirty-three 
degrees ; no part of the world enjoys a purer 
air or a more temperate climate, the grqat 
ocean which environs them, at once modera- 

• " The reader little fancies, as he sees this name, 
that his author is speaking of Shakespeare's * stiU vext 
Bermoothes/ and will naturaUy demand how islands 
lying in a equable latitude, and washed by a gentle sea, 
bearing the halcyon name of Summer Islands, whose 
climate * like the latter end of a fine May,' so favored 
the growth of oranges that the region was famous for 
them, can also be the stormy scene of * The Tempest,' 
&mous as * stiU vext. ' The explanation is simple. The 
islands are girded with a waU of rocks, and are accessi- 
ble only by two narrow entrances. The sea, heaving 
and tossing upon the rocks, gives the region a stormy 
and forbidding aspect, even in tranquil weather ; and in 
Shakespeare's time the isles were supposed to be peopled 
by monsters and devils." (Harper^ s Mag.^ ^^9-^ 1854.) 


ting the heat of the south winds and the 
severity of the north winds. Such a latitude 
on the continent might be thought too hot, 
but the air in Bermuda is perpetually fanned 
and kept cool by sea breezes, which render 
the weather the most healthy and delightful 
that could be wished, being (as is aflSrmed by 
persons who have long lived there) of one 
equal tenor almost throughout the whole year, 
like the latter end of a fine May, insomuch 
that it is resorted to as the Montpelier of 

"Nor are these isles (if we may believe 
the accounts given of them) less remarkable 
for plenty than for health, there being, beside 
beef, mutton, and fowl, great abundance of 
fruits and garden-stuff of all kinds in perfec- 
tion ; to this, if we add the great plenty and 
variety of fish which is every day taken on 
their coasts, it would seem that a seminary 
could nowhere be supplied with better pro- 
visions, or cheaper than here. About forty 
years ago, upon cutting down many tall ce- 


dars that sheltered their orange trees from 
the northwest wind (which sometimes blows 
even there so as to affect that delicate plant), 
a great part of their orange plantations suf- 
fered; but other cedars are since grown up, 
and no doubt a little industry would again 
produce as great plenty of oranges as ever 
was there heretofore. I mention this, because 
some have inferred, from the present scarcity 
of that fruit, for which Bermuda was once so 
famous, that there hath been a change in the 
soil and climate for the worse. But this, as 
has been observed, proceeded from another 
cause, which is now in great measure taken 

"Bermuda is a cluster of small islands, which 
lie in a very narrow compass, containing in 
all not quite twenty thousand acres. This 
group of isles is (to use Mr. Waller's expres- 
sion) walled round with rocks, which ren- 
der them inaccessible to pirates or enemies ; 
there being but two narrow entrances, both 
well guarded by forts. It would therefore be 


impossible to find anywhere a more secure re- 
treat for students. 

"The trade of Bermuda consists only in 
garden stuff and some poor manufactures, 
principally of cedar and the palmetto leaf. 

" Bermuda hats are worn by our ladies ; they 
are made of a sort of mat or (as they call it) 
platting, made of the palmetto leaf, which is 
the only commodity that I can find exported 
from Bermuda to Great Britain ; and there is 
no prospect of making a fortune by this small 
trade, so it cannot be supposed to tempt the 
Fellows of the college to engage in it, to the 
neglect of their peculiar business, which might 
possibly be the case elsewhere. 

Such as their trade is, such is their wealth : 
the inhabitants being much poorer than the 
other colonies, who do not fail to despise them 
upon that account. But if they have less 
wealth, they have withal less vice and expen- 
sive folly than their neighbors. They are 
represented as a contented, plain, innocent 
sort of people, free from avarice and luxury, 


as well as the other corruptions that attend 
those vices. 

« I am also informed that they are more con- 
stant attendants on divine service, more kind 
and respectful to their pastor (when they have 
one), and show much more humanity to their 
slaves, and charity to one another, than is 
observed among the English in the other plan- 
tations. One. reason of this may be, that con- 
demend criminals, being employed in the manu- 
factures of sugar and tobacco, were never 
transported thither. But whatever be the 
cause, the facts are attested by a clergyman of 
good credit, who lived long among them. 

« Among a people of this character, and in a 
situation thus circumstantiated, it would seem 
that a seminary of religion and learning might 
very fitly be placed ; the correspondence with 
other parts of America, the goodness of the 
air, the plenty and security of the place, the 
frugality and innocence of the inhabitants, all 
conspii-ing to favor such a design. Thus much 

at least is evident, that young students would 


be there less liable to be corrupted in their 
morals; and the governing part would be 
easier, and better contented with a small sti- 
pend, and a retired academical life, in a corner 
from whence avarice and luxury are excluded, 
than they can be supposed to be in the midst 
of a full trade and great riches, attended with 
all that high living and parade which our 
planters affect, and which, as well as all 
fashionable vices, should be far removed from 
the eyes of the young American missionaries, 
who are to lead a life of poverty and self-de- 
nial among their countrymen." 

The living machinery by which Berkeley 
proposed to work his institution was of course 
that part of it to which he directed his chief 
attention, and he thus describes the qualities 
to be required of the men who should take 
part in it : 

" Men of prudence, spirit, and zeal, as well 
as competent learning, who should be led to it 
by other motives than the necessity of picking 
up a maintenance. For, upon this view, what 


man of merit can be supposed to quit his native 
country, and take up with a poor college sub- 
sistence in another part of the world, where 
there are so many parishes actually void, and 
so many others ill supplied for want of fitting 
incumbents ? Is it likely that fellowships of 
fifty or sixty pounds a year should tempt abler 
or worthier men, than benefices of many 
times their value? And except able and 
worthy men do first engage in this affair, with 
a resolution to exert themselves in forming the 
manners of youth, and giving them a proper 
education, it is evident the mission and the 
college will be but in a very bad way." 

Berkeley then describes, in terms of un- 
affected modesty, the feelings which animated 
himself and his associates in the undertaking. • 
He says that they were : 

"In all respects very well qualified, and in 
possession of good preferments and fair pros- 
pects at home, who, having seriously consid- 
ered the great benefits that may arise to the 
Church and to mankind from such an under- 


taking, are ready to engage in it, and to 
dedicate the remainder of their lives to the 
instructing the youth of America, and prose- 
cuting their own studies upon a very moderate 
subsistence, in a retirement so sweet and so 
secure, and every way so well fitted for a 
place of education and study as Bermuda. 
For himself, he can only say, that as he val- 
ues no preferment upon earth so much as that 
of being employed in the execution of his 
design, so he hopes to make up for other 
defects by the sincerity of his endeavors." 
After touching upon the eflfbrts which had 
been made by Spanish and French missiona- 
ries of the Church of Rome in South and 
North America, and upon the opportunity 
which the realization of his scheme would 
give to the Church of England to discharge 
her duty in the same regions, Berkeley pro- 
ceeds to notice objections which might proba- 
bly be urged against his proposal. They were 
substantially the same with many which con- 
tinue to pass current in the present day ; and 


the terms, therefore, in whyjh he disposes of 
them, maywell claim our attention: 

" Perhaps it will be said, in opposition to 
this proposal, that if we thought ourselves 
capable of gaining converts to the Church, 
we ought ta begin with infidels, papists, and 
dissenters of all denominations at home, and 
to make proselytes of these before we think 
of foreigners ; and that, therefore, our scheme 
is against duty. And further, that consider- 
ing the great opposition which is found on 
the part of those who differ from us at home, 
no success can be expected among savages 
abroad, and that, therefore, it is against 
reason and experience. 

"In answer to this I say, that religion, like 
light, is imparted without being diminished. 
That whatever is done abroad can be no hin- 
der ance or let to the conversion of infidels 
or others at home. That those who engage 
in this affair imagine they will not be missed, 
where there is no want of schools or clergy ; 
but that they may be of singular service in 


countries but thinly supplied with either, or 
altogether deprived of both; that our colo- 
nies, being of the same blood, language, and 
religion with ourselves, are in effect our coun- 
trymen. But that Christian charity, not be- 
ing limited by those regards, doth extend to all 
mankind. And this may serve for an answer to 
the first point, that our design is against duty. 
« To the second point I answer, that igno- 
rance is not so incurable as error ; that you 
must pull down as well as build, erase as 
well as imprint, in order to make proselytes 
at home, whereas the savage Americans, if 
they are in a state purely natural, and unim- 
proved by education, they are also unencum- 
bered with all that rubbish of superstition 
which is the effect of a wrong one. As they 
are less instructed, they are withal less con- 
ceited, and more teachable. And not being 
violently attached to any false system of their 
own, ar6 so much the fitter to receive that 
which is true. Hence, it is evident that suc- 
cess abroad ought not to be measured by that 


which we observe at home, and that the infer- 
ence which was made from the difficulty of 
the one to the impossibility of the other, is 
altogether groundless." 

Another argument was drawn by Berkeley 
from the charter which James I. had granted 
to the first Virginia company, which declared 
that the desire to propagate the Gospel, and 
to extend the arts of civilized life among the 
natives of that and the adjoining provinces, 
had been the principal motives of inducement 
to the English Crown to plant settlements in 
the West. As the same or similar declara- 
tions had been repeated in every subsequent 
charter, it seemed impossible that the sover- 
eign or the people of England could escape 
from the obligation to which they had bound 
themselves ; the one, in giving, and the other, 
in receiving privileges to which such sacred 
duties were annexed. 

It was not only in the "Proposal," of 
which I have here given an outline, that the 
ardent feelings of Berkeley found a channel 


for their expression. His verses " On the 
prospect of planting Arts and Learning in 
America," manifest, in terms of no ordinary 
power, the devotion of his whole soul to that 
work, and the richness and beauty of the vis- 
ions which rose up before him in the contem- 
plation of it. Their composition has been by 
some persons assigned to a later date,* but, 
at whatsoever period written, they may well 
be inserted in this place, as setting forth a 
train of thought in harmony with his present 
noble enterprise : 

** The muse, disgnsted at an age and clime, 
Barren of every glorious theme, 
In distant lands now waits a better time, 
Producing subjects worthy fame. 

" In happy climes, where from the genial sun 
And virgin earth such scenes ensue. 
The force of art by nature seems outdone. 
And foncied beauties by the true. 

" In happy climes, the seat of innocence. 
Where nature guides and virtue rules. 
Where men shall not impose for truth and sense 
The pedantry of courts and schools, 

* In the Rhode Island Historical Col., III., 36, it is said 
that they were written at Newport 


" There shall be sung another golden age, 

The rise of empire and of arts, 
" The good and great inspiring epic rage, 

The wisest heads and noblest hearts. 

" Not snch as Europe breeds in her decay : 
Such as she bred when fresh and young, 
When heavenly flame did animate her obty, 
By ftiture poets shall be sung. 

*' Westward the course of empire takes its way. 
The first four acts already past, 
A fifth shall close the drama with the day ; 
Time's noblest offspring is the last" 




The most difficult part of the work— Characteristic letter 
from Dean Swift — The wrong road to royal favor — 
"What Bolingbroke thought of the missionary — Another 
channel attempted — Sjpeeding "the pious undertaking" 
— Death of King George the First — Accession of his 
promising son — Walpole continued in office — "Boetry 
and Bainting" — The genius of the people shines forth 
in spite of the indifference of the king — Letters to Mr. 
Prior — Light ahead — All obstacles overcome — Mar- 
riage — Departure for America. 

iOTHUS far Mr. Berkeley had got the plan 
for his college all nicely spread out upon 
paper : the foundation ,to consist of a Presi- 
dent and three Fellows. But the most difficult 
part was yet to be accomplished — to obtain 
a charter, and to raise money to carry it in- 
to execution. The enthusiastic projector of the 
scheme had applied to his friend Swift, who 
wrote to Lord Carteret, Lieutenant of Ireland, 
in his behalf. It is too characteristic a letter 
to be lost : 

DEAN swift's LETTEB. 136 

" 3d of September, 1724 — There is a gen- 
tleman of this kingdom just gone for England: 
it is Dr. George Berkeley, Dean of Derry, the 
best preferment among us, being worth about 
jEljlOO a year. He takes tte Bath in his way 
to London, and will, of course, attend your 
Excellency, and be presented, I suppose, by 
his friend, my Lord Burlington; and be- 
cause I believe you will choose out some very 
idle minutes to read this letter, perhaps you 
may not be ill entertained with some account 
of the man and his errand. He was a fellow 
in the university here ; and going to England 
very young, about thirteen years ago, he be- 
came the founder of a sect there, called the 
Immaterialists, by the force of a very curious 
book on that subject. Dr. Smalridge and 
many other eminent persons were his prose- 
lytes. 1 sent him secretary and chaplain to 
Sicily with my Lord Peterborough. And 
upon his Lordship's return, Dr. Berkeley spent 
above seven years in travelling over most 
parts of Europe, but chiefly through every 


corner of Italy, Sicily, and other islands. 
When ho came back to England, he found so 
many friends, that he was effectually recom- 
mended to the Duke of Grafton, by whom he 
was lately made Dean of Derry. Your Ex- 
cellency will be frighted when I tell you all 
this is but an introduction, for I am now to 
mention his errand. He is an absolute philo- 
sopher with regard to money, titles and power, 
and for three years past hath been struck 
with a notion of founding a university at Ber- 
muda, by a charter from the crown. He hath 
seduced several of the hopefullest young 
clergymen and others hero, many of them well 
provided for, and all of them in the fairest 
way of preferment ; but in England his con- 
quests are greater, and I doubt will spread 
very far this winter. He showed me a little 
tract which he designs to publish, and there 
your Excellency will see his whole scheme of 
a life academico-philosophical (I shall make 
you remember what you were), of a college 
founded for Indian scholars and missionaries, 


where lie most exorbitantly proposeth a 
whole hundred pounds a year for himself, 
forty pounds for a fellow, and ten for a stu- 
dent. His heart will break if his deanery be 
not taken from him, and left to your Excel- 
lency's disposal. I discourage him by the 
coldness of courts and ministers, who will in- 
terpret all this as impossible and a vision ; but 
nothing will do, and therefore I do humbly en- 
treat your Excellency, either to use such per- 
suasions as will keep one of the first men in 
this kingdom for learning and virtue at home, 
or assist him by your credit to compass his 
romantic design, which, however, is very ne- 
ble and generous, and directly proper for a 
great person of your excellent education to 

We have no means of knowing the eflTect of 
Swift's application in behalf of his friend. 
Lord Carteret was a man who would have ap- 
proved such a scheme, but he was not then in 
favor with Walpole, and therefore this was the 
wrong road to the patronage of royalty. 



Bolingbroke has left on record, in a letter 
to Swift, a description of the feelings which 
were awakened in his mind by Berkeley and 
his scheme: 

« I would not by any means (he says) lose 
the opportunity of knowing a man who can 
espouse in good earnest the opinion of Male- 
branche, and who is fond of going a mis- 
sionary into the West Indies. My zeal for 
the propagation of the gospel will not carry 
me so far ; but my spleen against Europe has 
more than once made me think of buying the 
dominion of Bermuda, and spending the re- 
mainder of my days as far as possible from the 
people with whom I have passed the first and 
the greatest part of my life." 

How striking is the contrast here pre- 
sented between the impressions made by the 
same outward object upon the minds of men 
who contemplate it from opposite points of 
sight ! The one covets it as a field upon 
which he may reap and gather in a bitter 
harvest of hate and scorn which sprang up 


from the seed of nnbelief; the other, that 
he may find therein the means of exercising 
the purest sympathies with which the love of 
God can animate man's heart. 

The clergy whom Swift describes as " well 
provided for, and in the fairest way of pre- 
ferment," whom Berkeley had persuaded to 
leave these bright prospects, and be content 
with a fellowship of o£40 a year in his pro- 
jected college, were three junior Fellows of 
Trinity College, Dublin — William Thompson, 
Jonathan Rogers, and Thomas King. But 
upon Berkeley lay the entire burden of pro- 
viding the means necessary for the work 
which engaged their thoughts and his. 

In 1725, Mr. Berkeley tried another chan-* 
nel to the men in power. He had in Italy 
made the acquaintance of the A.hh6 Gaultier. 
This personage formed one of a coterie of 
foreign men of letters, in whose conversation 
George the First used to try and forget the 
« bad Latin" of Sir Robert and Townshend, 
and steal an hour from his pipe and the Duoh- 


ess of Kendal. Through Gaultier, Berkeley's 
scheme was brought before the king. We 
will leave it to fancy to describe how those 
harsh German features must have stared at a 
proposal which involved such noble self-devo- 
tion. But George the First appreciated the 
design and its author, and enjoiued Walpole 
to speed " the pious undertaking." 

As we may suppose, it found little favor in 
the eyes of that able, cautious, but narrow- 
minded minister. To one whose whole states- 
craft was guieta non m<yvere; who was mighty 
in means, but small in conception ; and whose 
genius was peculiarly sober and practical, the 
plan appeared chimerical, and perhaps dan- 
gerous. It might tend to weaken the colonies 
and the State, and would certainly give 
trouble, and trench on vested rights; and 
even if it promoted religion, Sir Robert 
"cared for none of these things." Since, 
however, the king wished it, he carried the 
grant through the House of Commons — not, 
w^ believe, without a secret resolution to 


frustrate it — and, on this occasion, Berkeley 
wrote in rapture that only " two voices disap- 
proved of his project, and that even these 
seemed in shame at recording their oppo- 

The good man felt that the charter was 
almost in his hands, when a startling event 
put fresh difficulties in his way. I allude to 
the death of George the First. 

His Majesty, after an absence of several 
years, had gone once more to visit his favor- 
ite Hanover. He sailed from England on 
the 3d of June, 1727, and entered the bor- 
ders of Holland six days afterward, in the 
enjoyment of his usual good health. Death 
came unexpectedly upon him at midnight, on 
the 11th of June, in the sixty-eighth year of 
his age, and the thirteenth of his reign. 

George the Second succeeded to the throne. 
Great changes were looked for in the cabi- 
net, but Walpole managed to render himself 
so important to the queen, that she exerted 
all her influence with the king to have the 


prime minister retained in oflSce, and the 
result was that none of the old cabinet were 

The new monarch was a small, undignified 
man, with feeble intellectual capacities, and 
so indifferent to everything like literary culti- 
vation, that he never became a master of the 
English tongue, and plainly expressed his 
dislike for "boetry and bainting." It was, 
however, a singular fact, that during his 
reign " the genius of the British people shone 
forth brilliantly in every department of its 
power." This was the era in which the 
graceful pens of Gray, Young, and Thomp- 
son, produced their matchless numbers, so 
descriptive of the beauties and the attributes 
of nature ; for the " Churchyard Elegy," 
"The Seasons," and the "Night Thoughts," 
will ever remain contributions of the richest 
value to the poetical literature of the lan- 
guage. In the department of the drama, the 
pathetic eflfusions of Otway, and the elegant 
compositions of Rowe, deservedly attained 


great eminence, although their labors were so 
little appreciated by the monarch, or by the 
court, that the gifted author of " Venice Pre- 
served" absolutely starved to death. In com- 
edy, Congreve, Vanburgh, and Farquhar, 
produced works of sterling merit, which are 
to this day admired and represented: Two 
great historians began to flourish during the 
life of the second George, and culminated 
during the succeeding reign; for the names 
of Hume and Robertson will ever rank among 
the first in that diflScult yet attractive species 
of composition. " The History of England," 
and the " Reign of Charles V.," possess pecu- 
liar and distinctive merits, which have ren- 
dered their authors immortal. 

Dean Berkeley, as may well be supposed, 
was watching the progress of events with an 
anxious eye. The following extracts from 
letters to his friend, Thomas Prior, of Dublin, 
will not be unacceptable to our readers : 

« 15th of June, 1727. — Yesterday we had 
an account of King George's death ; this day 


King George II. was proclaimed. All the 
world here are in a hurry, and I as much as 
anybody, our grant being defeated by the 
king's dying before the broad seal was an- 
nexed to it, in order to which it was passing 
through the oflSces. I have la mer a boire 
again. You shall hear from me when I know 
more. At present I am at a loss what course 
to take. 

« 27th of June, 1727 — In a former letter I 
gave you to know that my affairs were un- 
ravelled by the death of his Majesty. I am 
now beginning on a new foot, and with good 
hopes of success. The warrant of our grant 
had been signed by the king, countersigned 
by the lords of the treasury, and passed the 
attorney-general ; here it stood when the ex- 
press came of the king's death. A new war- 
rant is now preparing, which must be signed 
by his present Majesty, in order to a patent's 
passing the broad seal. As soon as this affair 
is finished, I propose going to Ireland. 

«6th of July, 1727. — I have obtained a 


new warrant for a grant, signed by his pres- 
ent Majesty, contrary to the expectations of 
my friends, who thought nothing could be ex- 
pected of that kind in this great hurry of bu- 
siness. As soon as this grant, which is of the 
same import with that begun by his late 
Majesty, hath passed the oflSces and seals, I 
propose to execute my design of going to Ire- 

" 21st of July, 1727. My grant is now got 
further than where it was at the time of the 
king's death. I am in hopes the broad seal 
will soon be put to it, what remains to be 
done in order thereto being only matter of 
form ; so that I propose setting out from hence 
in a fortnight's time. When I set out, I shall 
write at the same time to tell you of it. I 
know not whether I shall stay longer than a 
month on that side of the water ; I am sure I 
shall not want the country lodging I desired 
you to procure for a longer time. Do not, 
therefore, take it for more than a month, if 
that can be done. I remember certain remote 



gttburbs, called Pimlico, and Dolphin's Barn, 
Imt know not whereabout they lie. If either 
of them be situate in a private, pleasant place, 
and airy, near the fields, I should therein 
like a first floor in a clean house (I desire no 
more) ; and it would be better if there was a 
bit of a garden, where I had the liberty to 
walk. This I mention in case my former de- 
sire cannot be conveniently answered for so 
short a time as a month ; and, if I may judge 
at this distance, those places seem as private 
as a house in the country ; for you must know 
what I chiefly aim at is secrecy. This makes 
me uneasy to find that there hath been a re- 
port spread among some of my friends in 
Dublin, of my designing to go over. I can- 
mot account for this, believing, after the pre- 
cautions I had given you, that you would 
ttot mention it, directly or indirectly, to any 

«20th of February, 1728 — I need not re- 
peat to you what I told you hero of the neces- 
aity there is for my raising all the money pos- 


Bible against my voyage, which, God willing, 
I shall begin in May, whatever you may hear 
suggested to the contrary, though you need 
not mention this. I propose to set out for 
Dublin about a month hence ; but of this you 
must -not give the least intimation to anybody. 
. I beg the favor of you to look out at leisure 
a convenient lodging for me, in or about 
Church street, or such other place as you 
shall think the most retired. I do not design 
to be known when I am in Ireland." 

In spite of every difficulty, the dean had 
been so sanguine of final success, and had 
shown such inexhaustible patience, that he 
sometimes inspired those friends with con- 
fidence who might otherwise have been 
disposed to regard his scheme as utterly im- 
practicable. "The members of the Scrib- 
lerus Club," says the first Lord Bathurst, 
" being met at his house at dinner, agreed to 
rally Berkeley, who was also his guest, on his 
scheme. Berkeley having listened to the 
many lively things they had to say, begged to 


be heard in his turn, and displayed his plan 
with such an astonishing and animating force 
of eloquence and enthusiasm, that they were 
struck dumb, and after some pause, rose all 
up together with earnestness exclaiming, « Let 
us set out with him immediately.' The inter- 
est thus created among the friends of Berke- 
ley, did not cease with the excitement which 
had awakened it. Some of them helped him 
with contributions which, considering the 
comparative value of money in that day, may 
well put to shame the amount of offerings by 
which so many are now content to limit the 
measure of their help to similar undertakings. 
We copy an incomplete list, which exhibits a 
sum exceeding <£5,000, subscribed in aid of 
his project,* and this would probably have 
reached a far higher amount, had not a prom- 
ise received through Sir Robert Walpole, 
whose name appears among the subscribers, 
led both Berkeley and others to believe that 

* The list is in Berkeley's handwriting. 


large assistance would have been furnished by 
the crown : 


Doan of York and his John Wolfe, Esq £100 

brother £300 Edward Harley, Esq. 100 

Earl of Oxford 200 Benjamin Hoare, Esq. 100 

Dr. Strafford 100 Lady Betty Hastings. 500 

Sir Matthew Decker.. 100 Sir Robert Walpole .. . 200 

Lady who desires to be Duke of Chandos 200 

unknown 500 Thos. Stanhope, Esq. . . 100 

Lord Bateman 100 Mrs. Drelincourt 100 

—Archer, Esq. , of Soho Dr. Felling 100 

square 500 Another clergyman 

Dr. Bundle 100 (added in another 

Dr. Grandorge 100 hand, Bishop Berke- 

Lord Pembroke 300 ley) 100 

Lord Peterborough 105 Mrs. Road 100 

Lord Arran 300 Lady who desires to be 

Lord Percivall 200 unknown 100 

Archibald Hutchinson, Gentleman who desires 

Esq 200 to be unknown 160 

At last every obstacle was overcome, and 
the broad seal was put to the warrant for 
Dean Berkeley's grant. On the first of 
August, 1727, he formed a happy marriage, 
and early the next month he was ready to 
begin his voyage to America. He thus writes 
on this important occasion, to his friend Prior : 

"Gravesend, 5th of September, 1728.— To- 


morrow, with God's blessing, I set sail fop 
Rhode Island, with my wife and a friend of 
hers, my Lady Hancock's daughter, who 
bears as company. I am married since I saw 
you, to Miss Forster, daughter of the late 
Chief Justice, whose humor and turn of mind 
pleases me beyond anything I knew in her 
whole sex. Mr. James, Mr. Dalton, and Mr. 
Smibert, go with us on this voyage ; we are 
now all together at Gravesend, and engaged 
in one view. When my next rents are paid, 
I must desire you to inquire for my cousin, 
Eichard Berkeley,* who was bred a public 
notary (I suppose he may, by that time, be 

^ This act of goodness to a poor relation being a mat- 
ter altogether of a private natnre, the editor was not 
sure whether he ought to have communicated it to the 
pablie. Certainly it is not given as an uncommon 
feature in our author's character, that he should be 
liberal to his relations ; his letters furnish many proofe 
of his generosity. But the reader will be pleased to 
recollect the time when this young man's wants were 
attended tor— the whole soul of the Bermuda projector 
on the stretch to attain what after so many obstmo- 
tiDns seemed at last to be within his grasp. 


out of his apprenticeship), and give him twen- 
ty raoidores as a present from me, toward 
helping him on his beginning the world. I 
believe I shall have occasion for <£600 Eng- 
lish before this year's income is paid by the 
farmers of my deanery. I must, therefore, 
desire you to speak to Messrs. Swift, etc., to 
give me credit for said sum in London about 
three months hence, in case I have occasion 
to draw for it, and I shall willingly pay 
their customary interest for the same till the 
farmers pay it to them, which I hope you will 
order punctually to be done by the first of 
June. Direct for me in Rhode Island, and 
enclose your letter in a cover to Thomas Cor- 
bet, Esq., at the admiralty office in London, 
who will always forward my letters by the 
first opportunity. Adieu. I write in great 
haste. A copy of my charter was sent to Dr. 
Ward by Dr. Clayton ; if it be not arrived 
when you go to London, write out of the 
charter the clause relating to my absence. 
Adieu once more." 



Going on in advance of the voyagers — Fenimore Coop- 
er's description of Newport Harber — First settlement 
— Three causes of the prosperity of Newport — Qua- 
kers and Jews — Mary Dyre — Trinity church built — 
James Honeyman the pastor — The old clock — Early 
planting of the church in Rhode Island — Mr. Honey- 
man's labors — An item of news from an old paper — 
The long voyage ended — An interesting incident, if 
true — A delightful surprise to the new comers. 

THILB Dean Berkeley is making his 
five months' voyage across the Atlan- 
tic, and Smibert, the artist, is trying to forget 
the tediousness of the passage by sketching 
the features of his companions, we will go on 
in advance and take a glimpse of Newport, 
where they propose to land. 

"No one who is familiar with the bustle 
and activity of an American commercial town 
(says Fenimore Cooper, in his «Red Ro- 

Trinity Church. Newpoiit, Rhodr I8la.nd. in which. Dean 
Berkeley often officiated. 



ver'),* would recognize in the repose which 
now reigns in the ancient mart of Rhode 
Island, a place that, in its day, has been 
ranked among the most important ports along 
the whole line of our extended coast. En- 
joying the four great requisites of a safe and 
commodious harbor — a placid basin, an outer 
harbor, and a convenient roadstead with a 
clear offing — Newport appeared to the eye of 
our European ancestors designed to shelter 

*Mr. Cooper was a devoted Churchman, and not a 
few of the hard knocks which he received from the 
press were owing to the boldness with which he ex- 
pressed his religious views. In his popular tale, " The 
Pioneers,'* the heroic old missionary of Otsego, the 
Eev. Daniel Nash (under the name of Parson Grant), 
occupies a conspicuous position. In another, "The 
Crater," a good deal of Church teaching is skilfully 
interwoven with a narrative of uncommon interest. 
In the " Red Skins," the scene of which is laid in the 
neighborhood of Albany during the memorable anti- 
rent excitements, Mr. Cooi)er has portrayed, with a 
masterly ability, the conservative chiiracter of that 
Church of God which teaches her children to walk in 
the " old paths," and to respect the ancient landmarks ^ 
as contrasted with the radical, reckless spirit, which is 
fostered by systems less staid and law-abiding. 


fleets, and to nurse a race of hardy and expert 

Newport was settled in the spring of 1639, 
and the next year land was set apart for a 
school, and the Rev. Robert Lenthel entrusted 
with the care of the children of the first 
inhabitants. The three causes of the ante- 
revolutionary prosperity of Newport were, 
first, the salubrity of its climate, which at- 
tracted strangers from every part of the 
country, and from the West India colonies ; 
secondly, the singular advantages of its har- 
bor, which offered a perfectly safe anchorage 
within a very little distance of the open sea ; 
and, thirdly, the spirit of entire religious 
toleration, which gives to the settlement of 
the whole State, first at Providence and then 
at Newport, an historical eminence no less 
enviable than singular. Quakers and Jews 
were among the earliest settlers, and the most 
distinguished and successful of its citizens. 
If the laws of Rhode Island, as is sometimes 
asserted, excepted Roman Catholics from the 


enjoyment of freedom of conscience, "the 
exception was not," says Bancroft, " the act 
of the people of Rhode Island. There were 
no Roman Catholics in the colony ; and when 
the French ships arrived, during the Revolu- 
tion, the inconsistent exception was immedi- 
ately erased by the Legislature." Often, from 
its first session, the General Assembly took 
care to promulgate the doctrine of absolute 
toleration. " We leave every man to walk 
as God persuades his heart." Mary Dyre, 
one of the early Quaker martyrs in Massachu- 
setts, was the wife of one of the original 
settlers of Newport ; and it was upon a visit 
to Massachusetts from Rhode Island that she 
was arrested and executed. One such event 
would be sure to strengthen a thousand-fold 
the fealty of every Rhode Islander to the 
principle upon which his State was based. 

The combination of the three causes grad- 
ually gave Newport a marked eminence among 
the chief American towns. A large foreign 
and domestic trade arose. Increasing wealth, 


and the constant visits of polished strangers, 
imparted to its society a character of dignity 
and intelligence which was remarkable at 
that period. At the commencement of the 
eighteenth century, about half of the inhabi- 
tants were Quakers, and until nearly the close 
of the previous century, there had been only 
two " orders of Christians" in the town. Bap- 
tists and Quakers. In 1702, the first Trinity 
Church (Episcopal) was built, and in 1724, 
there were too many Episcopalians to be 
accommodated in the building. The present 
edifice was completed in 1726. «It was 
acknowledged by the people of that day to 
be the most beautiful timber structure in 
America." The original pastor, James Honey- 
man, died July, 1750, «a paralytic disorder 
having interrupted him in the pulpit" ten 
years before, but without impairing his under- 
standing. In 1768 the new tower was built. 
In 1776 came the British, who staid until 
1779. They respected Trinity Church, al- 
though they converted the other churches 


of the town into riding-schools and hospi- 

The clock in the tower was made by Wil- 
liam Claggett, a Welshman, who lived for 
twenty years in Newport. He also made the 
first electrical machine ever seen in New 
England, from a description. When Frank- 
lin visited Newport, he saw such apparatus 
for the first time."* 

It is due to Mr. Honeyman, for his own 
sake, and from the fact that he was one of 
Dean Berkeley's first acquaintances on this 
side of the water, that we should say some- 
thing more concerning him. The following 
inscription upon his tombstone, in Trinity 
Church, Newport, records the leading events 
of his peaceful life : 

« Here lies the dust of James Honeyman, of 
venerable and ever worthy memory, a faith- 
ful minister of near fifty years, in the Episcopal 
Church in this town, which, by divine influence 
on his labors, has flourished and exceedingly 

• " Harper's Magazine," August, 1864. 


increased. He was of a respectable family in 
Scotland; an excellent scholar, a sound di- 
vine, and an accomplished gentleman ; a strong 
asserter of the doctrine and discipline of the 
Church of England, and yet, with the arm 
of charity, embraced all sincere followers 
of Christ ; happy in his relative station in 
life, the duties of which he sustained and dis- 
charged in a laudable and exemplary manner ; 
blessed with an excellent and vigorous consti- 
tution, which he made subservient to the vari- 
ous duties of a numerous parish, until a para- 
lytic disorder interrupted him in the pulpit, 
and in two years, without impairing his un- 
derstanding, cut short the thread of life, on 
July 2, 1750." 

Besides the care of his own particular dis- 
trict, Mr. Honeyman made frequent visits to 
iieigliboring towns on the continent, until 
another minister was assigned to them. Very 
early in his career he felt the great disadvan- 
tage under which the Church was laboring for 
want of a superintending head. Writing to 


the secretary of the Society, in 1709, he says: 
" You can neither well believe, nor I express, 
what excellent services for the cause of reli- 
gion a bishop would do in these parts ;" and 
he expresses a conviction that, if one were sent, 
" these infant settlements would become beau- 
tiful nurseries, which now seem to languish for 
want of a father to oversee and bless them." 
In 1714, he presented a memorial to Governor 
Nicholson, on the religious condition of Rhode 
Island. The people, he says^ were divided 
among Quakers, Anabaptists, Independents, 
Gortonians, and Infidels, with a remnant of 
true Churchmen. He then suggests a reme- 
dy in the settlement of a number of clergy 
in the several townships under a bishop, the 
establishment of schools, and a proper en- 
couragement frpm the civil government. A 
new and most painful duty was imposed upon 
him in 1723, in attending daily, for nearly 
two months, a great number of pirates, who 
were brought into Rhode Island, tried, con- 
victed, and executed. 


There is probably not a single mission at 
the present time, in the whole of our North 
American colonies, so beset with difficulties 
and discouragements, and so entirely depend- 
ent upon the zeal and judgment of the indi- 
vidual clergymen in charge, as were most of 
the parishes in the now independent States at 
the commencement of the last century. No 
better instance can be given than this of 
Ehode Island, where a single clergyman was 
set to labor in the midst of a populatipn hos- 
tile for the most part to the Church, and 
without the smallest support from secular 

In 1728, Mr. Honeyman and another cler- 
gyman, the Bev. J. Macsparran, who, since 
1719, had occupied the mission of Narragan- 
set, sent home a joint memorial, in which, 
after complaining of the "frowns and dis- 
couragements" to which they were subjected 
by the government, they stated that there was 
only " one baptized Christian in their whole 
legislature." In a subsequent letter, Mr. 


Honeyman introduces to the Society Mr* 
Samuel Seabury,* who had been a dissenting 
preacher, but had become, on principle, a con- 
vert to the Church, and announces the arrival 
at Providence of Mr. Browne, recently or* 
dained in England. 

The only further extract that need be given 
from Mr. Honeyman's correspondence, is dated 
September, 1782, and occurs in connection 
with an application to the society for a small 
increase to his stipend, to enable him to pro- 
vide for his family. "Between New- York 
and Boston, the distance of three hundred 
miles, and wherein are many missions, there 
is not a congregation, in the way of the 
Church of England, that can pretend to com- 
pare with mine, or equal it in^any respect; 
nor does my church consist of members that 
were of it when I came here, for I have 
buried them all ; nor is there any one person 
now alive that did then belong to it, so that 

• Father of the first Bishop of Connecticut 


our present appearing is entirely owing to the 
blessing of God upon my endeavors to serve 

In consequence of his urgent representa- 
tions of the want of a missionary at Provi- 
dence, a place about thirty miles distant from 
Newport, and where he had preached to such 
numbers that no house could hold them, and 
his hearers were obliged to adjourn to the open 
fields, the society sent there, in 1742, the 
Eev. George Pigot. The people had already, 
by great exertions, erected a wooden church, 
and the congregation increased rapidly after 
Mr. Pigot's arrival. Before, however, enter- 
ing upon this mission, he was stationed for a 
time at Stratford, where he says, " Our cause 
flourishes mightily in this country; indeed, 
so much so, that our neighbors look on with 
astonishment. The Mathers are diligent in 
sending circular letters to all places, exhort- 
ing them to trace the pious steps of their 

By this time the ship in which Dean Berke- 


ley left England so long ago, must be ap- 
proaching the American coast, and we stop 
short in our historical researches, in order 
that we may be ready to receive him^ 

A letter written from Newport, and pub- 
lished in the New-England Weekly Jawnud^ in 
Boston, in the spring of 1729, says: 

"Yesterday arrived here Dean Berkeley, 
of Londonderry, in a pretty large ship. He 
is a gentleman of middle stature, of an agree- 
able, pleasant, and erect aspect. He was 
ushered into the town with a great number of 
gentlemen, to whom he behaved himself after 
a very complaisant manner. 'Tis said he 
proposes to tarry here with his family about 
three months." 

There is a tradition, probably worth but 
little, that the dean reached Newport on 
a holy day, when good Parson Honeyman 
was celebrating divine worship in Trinity 
Church. The pilot came in and announced 
to the clergyman that a dignitary of the 
English Church had just arrived in the har- 


bor, whereupon the people were dismissed 
with the blessing, and the whole body has- 
tened to the wharf to welcome the distin- 
guished stranger.* 

We can easily imagine the delightful sur- 
prise which Berkeley acknowledges at first 
view of that lovely bay and the adjacent 
country. The water tinted, in the clear au- 
tumn air, like the Mediterranean; the fields 
adorned with symmetrical haystacks and gol- 
den maize, and bounded by a lucid Horizon, 
against which rose picturesque windmills and 
the clustered dwellings of the town, and the 
noble trees which then covered the island; 
the bracing yet tempered atmosphere, all 
greeted the senses of those weary voyagers, 
and kindled the grateful admiration of their 
romantic leader. 

• Memoir of Trinity Church, Newi)OTt, from 1698 to 
1810, compiled from the records, by Henry BuU, Esq., 
with notes by the fiev. Francis Vinton ; also, Updike's 
Narr. Chnxoh, 395. 

Whitehall, Dean Berkeley's Residence, near New- 
port. Bhode Island. 

To flront Chap. XIL 



The Dean's first impressions of America — His own letr 
ters— Remarks on the climate of New England — De- 
scription of the island — Newport as it then was — 
Sharpness of winter — Uncertainty of his position — 
Purchase of. a &>rm — Whitehall — Mr. Bnmaby's de- 
scription of it — " The Montpelier of America" — Gror- 
geous sunsets—Eflfects of the Gulf stream— Narraganset 
poniesj— Quaker broad-brims at church — Siberian Tar- 
tars — Dean Berkeley's sermontf-^Preseiits an organ to 
Trinity Church—" Though dead, yet speaketh." 

^EAN BERKELEY'S first impressions 
of America, and of the difficulties and' 
consolations of his position, are best described 
in his own letters, which have been fortu- 
nately preserved : 

« Newport, in Rhode Island, 24th of April, 
1729. — I can by this time say something to 
you, from my own experience, of this place 
and people. The inhabitants are of a mixed 
kind, consisting of many sects and sub-divis- 
ions of sects. Here are four sorts of Ana- 


baptists, besides Presbyterians, Quakers, In- 
dependents, and many of no profession at all. 
Notwithstanding so many diflferences, here are 
fewer quarrels about religion than elsewhere, 
the people living peaceably with their neigh- 
bors, of whatsoever persuasion. They all 
agree in one point, that the Church of Eng- 
land is the second best. The climate is like 
that of Italy, and not at all colder in the 
winter than I have known it everywhere 
north of Rome. The spring is late, but to 
make amends, they assure me the autumns are 
the finest and longest in the world ; and the 
'summers are much pleasanter than those of 
Italy, by all accounts, as the grass continues 
green, which it doth not there. This island 
is pleasantly laid out in hills and vales, and 
rising grounds; hath plenty of excellent 
springs and fine rivulets, and many delight- 
ful landscapes of rocks and promontories, 
and adjacent lands. The provisions are very 
good ; so are the fruits, which are quite neg- 
lected, though vines sprout up of themselves 


to an extraordinary size, and seem as natural 
to this soil as to any I ever saw. The town 
of Newport contains about six thousand souls, 
and is the most thriving, flourishing place, in 
all America, for its bigness. It is very pretty, 
and pleasantly situated. I was never more 
agreeably surprised than at the first sight of 
the town and its harbor. I could give you 
some hints that may be of use to you, if you 
were disposed to take advice ; but of all men 
in the world I never found encouragement to 
give you any. I have heard nothing from 
you or any of my friends in England or Ire- 
land, which makes me suspect my letters were 
in one of the vessels that were wrecked. I 
write in great haste, and have no time to say 
a word to my brother Robin ; let him know 
we are in good health. Take care that my 
draughts are duly honored, which is of the 
greatest importance to my credit here ; and if 
I can serve you in these parts, you may com- 

" Yours, &c." 


The nex^ letter is dated the 12th of Jnne, 
of the same year, and is as follows : 

" Being informed that an inhabitant of this 
country is on the point of going for Ireland, 
I would not omit writing to you. The win- 
ter, it must be allowed, was much harper 
than the usual winters in Ireland, but not at 
all sharper than I have known them in Italy. 
To make amends, the summer is exceedingly 
delightful, and if the spring begins late, the 
autumn ends proportionably later than with 
you, and is said to be the finest in the world. 
I snatch this moment to write, and have time 
only to add that I have got a son, who, I 
thank God, is likely to live. I find it hath 
been reported in Ireland that we propose 
settling here ; I must desire you to discounte- 
nance any such report. The truth is, if the 
king's bounty were paid in, and the charter 
could be removed hither, I should like it bet- 
ter than Bermuda. But if this were men- 
tioned before the payment of said money, it 
might perhaps hinder it, and defeat all our 


designs. As to what you say of Hamilton's 
proposal, I can only answer at present by a 
question, viz : Whether it be possible for me, 
in my absence, to be put in possession of the 
deanery of Dromore? Desire him to make 
that point clear, and you shall hear further 
from me." 

Again, on the 9th of March, 1730, he 
writes : 

" My situation hath been so uncert9,in, and 
is like to continue so till I am clear about the 
receipt of his Majesty's bounty, and in conse- 
quence thereof, of the determination of my 
associates, that you are not to wonder at my 
having given no categorical answer to the 
proposal you made in relation to Hamilton's 
deanery, which his death hath put an end to. 
If I had returned, J should, perhaps, have 
been under some temptation to change. But 
as my design still continues to wait the event, 
and go to Bermuda as soon as I can get asso- 
ciates and money, which my friends are now 

soliciting in London, .1 shall in such case per- 


sist in my first resolution, of not holding any 
deanery beyond the limited time. I live hero 
npon- land that I have purchased, and in a 
farm-house that I have built in this island ; it 
is fit for cows and sheep, and may be of good 
use in supplying our college at Bermuda. 
Among my delays and disappoiutments I thank 
God I have two domestic comforts that are 
very agreeable, my wife and my little son, 
both which exceed my expectations, and fully 
answer all my wishes. Messrs. James, Dal- 
ton, and Smibert, etc., are at Boston, and 
have been there these four months. My wife 
and I abide by Rhode Island, preferring quiet 
and solitude to the noise of a great town, 
notwithstanding all the solicitations that have 
been used to draw us thither. I have desired 
MacManus, in a letter to Dr. Ward, to allow 
twenty pounds per annum for me toward 
the poor-house now on foot for clergymen's 
widows, in the diocese of Derry." 

The place which the dean speaks of having 
purchased, was a farm of ninety-six acres, to 


which he gave the name of Whitehall. He 
built his house at the foot of Honeyman's Hill, 
for the reason, as he said, that he would 
rather walk to see the prospect, than to have 
it before him all the time. 

The Rev. Andrew Burnaby, who travelled 
through the middle settlements in North 
America, in the year 1759, furnishes the fol- 
lowing interesting particulars : 

"About three miles from town (Newport) 
is an indifferent wooden house, built by dean 
Berkeley, when he was in these parts; the 
situation is low, but commands a fine view of 
the ocean, and of some wild rugged rocks 
that are on the left hand of it. They relate 
here several strange stories of the dean's 
wild and chimerical notions, which, as they 
are characteristic of that extraordinary man, 
deserve to be taken notice of. One, in par- 
ticular, I must beg the reader's indulgence to 
allow me to repeat to him. The dean had 
formed a plan of building a town upon the 
rocks, and of cutting a road through a sandy 


beach, which lies a little below it, in order 
that ships might come up and be sheltered 
in bad weather. He was so full of this pro- 
ject, as one day to say to one Smibert, a 
designer whom he had brought over with him 
from Europe, on the latter asking some ludi- 
crous question concerning the future impor- 
tance of the place: « Truly, you have very 
little foresight, for in fifty years' time every 
foot of land in this place will be as valuable 
as the land in Cheapside.' The dean's house, 
notwithstanding his prediction, is at present 
nothing better than a farm-house, and his 
library converted into a dairy ; when he left 
America he gave it to the college at New 
Haven, in Connecticut, who have let it to a 
farmer on a long lease ; his books he divided 
between this college and that in Massachu- 
setts. The dean is said to have written, in 
this place. The Minute Philosopher.'*^ 

The dean calls Newport " The Montpelier 
of America," and he appears to have com- 
muned with nature and inhaled the salubrious 


breeze, while pursuing his meditations, with 
all the delight of a healthy organization and 
a susceptible and observant mind. A few ra- 
vines, finely wooded, and with fresh streams 
purling over rocky beds, vary the alternate 
uplands; from elevated points a charming 
distribution of water enlivens the prospect, 
and the shore is indented with high cliffs or 
rounded into graceful curves. The sunsets 
are remarkable for a display of gorgeous and 
radiant clouds ; the wide sweep of pasture is 
only broken by low ranges of stone wall, 
clumps of sycamores, orchards, hay-stacks, 
and mill-towers ; and over luxuriant clover 
beds, tasselled maize, or fallow acres, plays, 
for two thirds of the year, a southwestern 
breeze, chastened and moistened by the gulf 
stream. Intercourse with Boston was then 
the chief means on the island of acquiring 
political and domestic news. A brisk trade 
was carried on between ihe West Indies, 
Prance, England, and the Low Countries, 

curious memorials of which are still visible in 


some of the old mansions, in the shape of 
china and glassware, of obsolete patterns, 
and faded specimens of rich brocade. A 
sturdy breed of Narraganset ponies carried 
fair equestrians from one to another of the 
many hospitable dwellings scattered over the 
fields, on which browsed sheep and cackled 
geese, still famous in epicurean reminiscence ; 
while tropical fruits were constantly imported, 
and an abundance and variety of fish and 
fowl rewarded the most careless sportsman. 
Thus blessed by nature, the accidental home 
of the philosophic deah soon won his affection. 
Intelligent members of all denominations uni- 
ted in admiration of his society and attend- 
ance upon his preaching. 

With one neighbor he dined every Sunday, 
to the child of another he became godfather, 
and with a third, took counsel for the estab- 
lishment of the literary club which founded 
the Redwood Library. It was usual then to 
see the broad brim of the Quakers in the 
alleys of Trinity Church ; and, as an instance 


of his emphatic, yet tolerant style, it is related 
that he once observed in a sermon, " Give the 
devil his due : John Calvin was a great man." 
We find him, at one time, writing a letter 
of encouragement to a Huguenot preacher of 
Providence, and, at another, visiting Narra- 
ganset with Smibert, to examine the aborigi- 
nal inhabitants. His own opinion of the race 
was given in the discourse on " The Propaga- 
tion of the Gospel in Foreign Parts," de- 
livered in London on his return. To the eth- 
nologist it may be interesting, in reference to 
this subject, to revert to the anecdote of the 
portrait painter, cited by Dr. Barton. He 
had been employed by the Grand Duke of 
Tuscany to paint two or three Siberian Tar- 
tars, presented to that prince by the Czar of 
Russia ; and, on first landing in Narragan- 
set with Berkeley, he instantly recognized 
the Indians there as the same race as the 
Siberian Tartars; an opinion confirmed by 
Wolff, the celebrated eastern traveller.* 

• Condensed from Tuckerman's BiograpUecU Essai^Sy 
p. 262, etc. 


Dean Berkeley was not disposed to bo 
officious in proposing to preach for his breth- 
ren, Honeyman, MacSparren, Guy, and Pigot, 
whom he found diligently laboring in the 
Master's vineyard ; but he was welcomed by 
them as a friend and an adviser, and he was 
always ready to help them in their ministerial 
duties. Quite a number of manuscript sermons 
are still in existence, which he preached 
during his residence in Rhode Island. The 
earliest ];>ears date January 26, 1728-9 ; the 
latest, the first Sunday in August, 1730. 
They are written in brief notes, on one sheet 
of paper, and exhibit, even in this skeleton 
form, a faithful enforcement of the Word of 
God, clear and strong reasoning, and happy 
illustrations. The present pulpit of Trinity 
Church, Newport, is the only one remaining 
from which the dean preached. 

After his return to England, he sent over 
an organ as a present to the town of Berkeley, 
in Massachusetts, which had been named after 
him. The selectmen, however, were afraid to 


give shelter to it, and passed a vote that " an 
organ is an instrument of the devil, for the 
entrapping of men's souls," and respectfully 
declined the offer. Trinity Church, Newport, 
was the gainer by their conscientious scruples, 
and the organ still sends forth its solemn 
strains from some of the old pipes.* 

The fine society of those early days sleep 
around the simple, quaint old building, which 
they thronged to hear him, and among them 
lies his daughter Lucia, who died in Septem- 
ber, 1731. The benign Bishop, "though dead, 

• MasorCs Newport Illustrated, p. 99. It is said that 
there is another claimant for the honors of the organ, 
in a church of Brooklyn, N. Y. The story goes that the 
Newport organ, being out of repair, was sent to New- 
York to be put in order. A portion of the pipes were 
found to be so defective, that it was considered expedi- 
ent to replace them by new ones, which were provided 
and forwarded in the old case. It afterwards occurred 
to a workman that the old metal should not be thrown 
away, so he restored the rejected pipes, and they were 
set up in a new case in the Brooklyn church. Mason 
states, " the original case of English oak is still in use 
in the church, and it contains a part of the old works, 
with the addition of such new pipes as were found neces- 
sary when it was rebuilt a few years ago." 


yet speaketh," if no longer -from the pulpit of 
Trinity Church, yet his Minute Philosopherj 
read among the Hanging Bocks, shall be as 
good a sermon as was ever preached. Let 
the gay procession pause, and hear these 
words, whose sense seems not altogether ob- 
solete nor inappropriate, "I imagine that 
. . . the real cause of whatever is amiss, 
may justly be reckoned the general neglect of 
education in those who need it most — the peo- 
ple of fashion. What can be expected, where 
those who have the most influence have the 
least sense, and those who are sure to be fol- 
lowed set the worst example; where youth 
so uneducated are yet so forward; where 
modesty is esteemed pusillanimity, and a 
deference to years, knowledge, religion, laws, 
want of sense and spirit?" 

Such questions were asked by the most reli- 
gious of philosophers upon Sachuset beach, in 
1730, and such was the substance of a dean's 
discourses in Trinity Church. 



Our indignation aronsed at the treatment which Dean 
Berkeley receives — His wonderful patience — Nothing 
heard of the promised ftmd for the college — Reports 
which were unfounded — Extravagancies of religious 
^inaticism in Rhode Island — Living without the Sa* 
craments— Nothing but disappointment to be looked 
for— Bishop Gibson obtains a definite reply firom Wal- 
pole — The land in St Christopher's sold — A glorious 
prospect comes to an untimely end. 

^0 one can help feeling indignant that 
Dean Berkeley should have been kept 
all this while in a state of uncertainty, his 
resolute and cheerful spirit struggling man- 
fully against the depressing effects of disap- 
pointed hcfpes. Even when communicating 
to his friend Pryor the painful reports which 
had reached him, he did so in language which 
indicated the gentleness and composure of 
his Christian temper. 

He writes, under date May 7, 1730, as fol- 


«I want only the payment of the king's 
grant to transport myself and family thither 
(to Bermuda). I am now employing the in- 
terest of my friends in England for that pur- 
pose, and I have wrote in the most pressing 
manner, either to get the money paid, or at 
least such an authentic answer as I may count 
upon, a,nd may direct me what course to take. 
Dr. Clayton, indeed, hath wrote me word, 
that he hath been informed by a very good 
friend of jnine, who had it from a very great 
man, that it would not be paid. But I cannot 
think a hearsay, at second or third hand, to 
be a proper answer for me to act upon. I 
have, therefore, suggested to the doctor, that 
it might be proper for him to go himself to 
the treasury with the letters patent contain- 
ing the grant in his hands, and there make 
his demand in form. I have also wrote to 
others to use their interest at court, though 
indeed one would have thought all solicita- 
tion at end when once I had obtained a grant 
under his Majesty's hand, and the broad seal 


of England. As to my own going to London, 
and soliciting in person, I think it reasonable 
first to see what my friends can do ; and the 
rather because I shall have small hopes that 
my solicitation will be more regarded than 

He writes again,- on the 20th of July, and 
says : 

« I have not had one line from the persons 
to whom I had wrote to make the last 
instances for the <£205000. This I impute to 
an accident that we hear happened to a man- 
of-war, as it was coining down the river from 
Boston, where it was expected some months 
ago, and is now daily looked for with the new 

This wearisome looking after help which> 
it appeared more and more likely, might never 
come, was not the only trial which Berkeley 
had to bear. A report had begun to spread 
in Ireland that he meant, whatsoever might 
be the issue of his project, to remain in 
America, and retain the income of his deanery. 


« I must desire you," he writes, " to dis- 
countenance such a report. Be assured, I 
long to know the upshot of this matter ; and 
that, upon an explicit refusal, I am determined 
to return home ; and that it is not at all in 
my thoughts to continue abroad and hold my 
deanery. It is well known to many consider- 
able persons in England, that I might have 
had a dispensation for holding it in my ab- 
sence during life, and that I was much pressed 
to it, but I resolutely declined it ; and if our 
college had taken place as soon as I once 
hoped it would, I should have resigned before 
this time. I do assure you, honafde^ that I 
have no intention to stay here longer than I 
can get an authentic answer from the govern- 
ment, which I have all the reason in the world 
to expect this summer ; for, upon all private 
accounts, I should like Derry better than 
New England. As I am here in order to 
execute a design addressed for by Parlia- 
ment, and set on foot by his Majesty's royal 
charter, I think myself obliged to wait the 


event, whatever course is taken in Ireland 
about my deanery." 

The conduct of Berkeley, therefore, under 
these harassing delays, was as consistent and 
just as his motives were pure. 

But he has other claims upon our gratitude 
for the course he pursued whilst in Rhode 
Island. Although chiefly occupied with ma- 
king the preparations for his future enter- 
prise, he lost no opportunity of present use- 
fulness, but labored, everywhere and at all 
times, to forward, as he best could, the ser- 
vice of his Heavenly Master. 

The condition of Rhode Island was such as 
to present no ordinary diflSculties in the way 
of his success. A century was now just about 
to close, since Roger Williams and his five 
companions had first landed from their small 
Indian canoe, in Narraganset Bay, and had 
given the name of Providence to that spot, in 
token of the overruling providence of God, 
which had saved him out of all the perils of 
the persecution provoked by him at Salem. 


The territory purchased by Williams from the 
Narraganset Indians on the continent, and in 
the islands of the bay, had soon become peo- 
pled with the many English emigrants who 
sought and found there a place of refuge amid 
their own distress. But the liberty which 
Williams thus continued to give to all comers, 
to indulge without restraint the wildest ex- 
travagancies of religious fanaticism, had led 
to a confusion of opinion and character among 
the inhabitants of Rhode Island, not easily 
to be effaced. If Cotton Mather, for instance, 
could represent Rhode Island as " a Colluvies 
of Antinomians, Familists, Anabaptists, Anti- 
Sabbatarians, Arminians, Socinians, Quakers, 
Ranters, and everything but Roman Catho- 
liqg and true Christians, bona terra, mala gens,^' 
it is a representation which certainly may be 
regarded as in some degree borne out by that 
which Berkeley gave a few months after his 
arrival, in a letter to Prior. 

The dean confirms this description, in the 
more deliberate account given a few years 


afterward of the same people, in his anniver- 
sary sermon, preached before the Society for 
the Propagation of the Gospel, and supplies, 
withal, the" reason of the cessation which is 
mentioned above, of their religious feuds. 
He says, that they consisted chiefly of " sec- 
tarians of many diflferent denominations, who 
seem to have worn oflF part of that prejudice 
which they inherited from their ancestors 
against the national Church of this land, 
though it must be acknowledged, at the same 
time, that many of them, have worn off a 
serious sense of all religion. Several, indeed, 
of the better sort, are accustomed to assemble 
themselves regularly on the Lord's Day for 
the performance of divine worship ; but most 
of those who are dispersed throughout this 
colony seem to rival some well-bred people of 
other countries, in a thorough indiflference for 
all that is sacred, being equally careless of 
outward worship and of inward principles, 
whether of faith or practice. Of the bulk o£ 

them, it may certainly be said that they live 


without the sacraments, not being so much as 
baptized ; and, as for their morals, I appre- 
hend there is nothing in them that should 
tempt others to make an experiment of their 
principles, either in religion or in govern- 

At length the rumors which had reached 
the dean before, assumed a definite shape, and 
convinced him that he had nothing but disap- 
pointment to look for. Dr. Gibson, then 
Bishop of London (in whose diocese all the 
West Indies were included), after being put 
off with many plausible excuses, entreated 
that he might have an interview with Sir 
Robert Walpole, and. obtain, for Berkeley's 
sake, a definite answer to his application, 
whether the promised grant were to be paid 
or not. The interview was acceded to, and 
Walpole gave this answer : 

" If you put this question to me as a minis- 
ter, I must, and can assure you, that the money 
shall most undoubtedly be paid as soon as 
suits with public convenience ; but if you ask 


me as a friend, whether Dean Berkeley should 
continue in America, expecting the payment 
of i)2050005 I advise him by all means to 
return home to Europe, and to give up hi« 
present expectations." 

It appears that Sir Eobert Walpole* had 
never approved of Mr. Berkeley's design, and 
was not sorry for an opportunity of defeating 
it. The lands in St. Christopher's Island 
were sold for ninety thousand pounds, and 
the money was appropriated to the dowry of 
the Princess Royal, on her marriage with the 
Prince of Orange, and the establishment of 
Protestant settlers in Georgia, under the 
direction of General Oglethorpe. 

After three years' painful suspense, it was 
indeed most shameful that the good man should 

• Horace Walpole probably only repeated the senti- 
ments of his brother when he speaks, in his "Anecdotes 
of Painting in England," of ** the uncertain but amu- 
sing scheme of the famous Dean Berkeley, afterward 
Bishop of Cloyne, whose benevolent heart was then 
warmly set upon the erection of a universal college of 
science and arts, for the instruction of heathen ohildien 
in Christian duties and civil knowledge.'' 


be tnus cruelly disappointed ; but there was 
no way of obtaining redress, and he began to 
make his arrangements to return to England. 
Thus perished, through the folly and duplicity 
of Sir Robert Walpole, a project which must 
have been productive of great good, and on 
which its amiable and excellent author had 
expended the larger portion of his property, 
and several of the best years of his life, 
America, however, will never forget his be- 
nevolent mission, and the name of Berkeley 
will always sound in the ears of the people 
of this continent as that of a friend and bene* 



Interesting particulars about Dr. Johnson — Early taste 
for study— Enters Yale College— A tutor at twenty- 
Becomes a Congregational preacher — An addition to 
the library of Yale College, which brings about some 
imx)ortant results — Mr. Johnson's first acqaaintance 
with the Prayer-book — Further investigations con- 
vince him of the truth of Episcopacy — Worldly pros- 
pects sacrificed— Goes to England for ordination — 
Takes charge of the church at Stratford — One of the 
first to welcome Dean Berkeley to America — " The 
Minute Philosopher" — A good word spoken for Yale 
College, which secures for it land and books — ^Dr. 
Johnson's career briefly traced to the end. 

^EAN BERKELEY'S sojourn in America 
had made him acquainted with some of 
those excellent and devoted clergymen, who, 
in the days of the Church's weakness, were 
willing to do battle in her cause. Prominent 
among these was Dr. Samuel Johnson, whose 
history is too interesting to be omitted. He 
was born at Guilford, Connecticut, October 
14, 1696— his father being a deacon of the 


Congregational Society. As the lad mani- 
fested a great fondness for books, the best 
advantages for education which the country 
afforded were given him, and at the early age 
of fourteen he became a student of Yale Col- 
lege, then in its infancy, and situated at 
Saybrook. In 1716, when the college was 
removed to New Haven, young Johnson, 
though only twenty years of age, was chosen 
one of its tutors. The next year his class- 
mate and particular friend, Daniel Brown, 
received a similar appointment. 

Yale College was the stronghold of the In- 
dependents, and of course the hostility felt 
by all connected with it against the English 
Church, was inveterate and determined. So 
important, indeed, was it considered to keep 
the young men in ignorance about Church 
government, that some of the best instru- 
ments of Christian training were shut out 
from the institution ; and its fundamental law 
prescribed that no student should be allowed 
instruction in any other system of divinity 


than 8uch as the trustees appointed ; and 
every one was obliged to learn the Assembly's 
Catechism, and the books of puritanical au- 

About the year 1711, the agent of the 
colony in England sent over eight hundred 
volumes, among which were many of the 
standard writers of the English Church, such 
as Hooker, Chillingworth, Hall, Jackson, 
Sanderson, Taylor, and Usher. These rich 
treasures were eagerly seized upon by the 
professors and students, and the first whom 
they affected were the rector of the college, 
Dr. Cutler, and the tutors, Johnson and 

Some of the Independent preachers from 
the neighboring towns came to the college, 
to examine the valuable addition which the 
library had received; and in their meetings 
on such occasions, a friendly interchange of 
thought and feeling took place upon the im- 
portant subjects which had been recently 
brought before them. 


In 1720, Mr. Johnson resigned his position 
as tutor, and began to preach at West Haven, 
a village four miles oflF from the college. He 
still continued to study the theological works 
in the library, and to hold frequent discus- 
sions with his valued friends. Brown and 

A very short experience as a minister 
among the Independents, convinced him that 
the practice of conducting public worship 
without a prescribed form, was the occasion 
of many evils ; and while this impression was 
fresh in his mind, he met with the able dis- 
course of Archbishop King, " Of the inven- 
tions of men in the worship of God." This 
appeared to him to demonstrate, most power- 
fully, the infinite superiority of sound forms 
of prayer over extemporaneous utterances. 
In 1716, he met, for the first time, with the 
Prayer-book of the Church of England, and, 
seeing therein how peifectly the wants of all 
classes of her people were expressed in peti- 
tions which, for the most part, echoed the 


words, and at all times breathed the spirit of 
holy Scripture ; how faithfully the praises of 
saints, and martyrs, and confessors of old 
time, were renewed in her hymns of thanks- 
giving ; and with what patient, untiring 
watchfulness, she waited upon the Christian 
pilgrim, from the font of holy baptism to his 
grave, and renewed, through every changing 
scene of life, the needful words of warning or 
of comfort ; it is no marvel that he should 
gradually have found feelings of reverence 
and admiration for the Church of England 
take possession of his mind. 

But to recognize the Church of England as 
a "witness and keeper of Holy Writ," and 
therein a faithful teacher of righteousness 
unto the people, was not the only conclusion 
to which Johnson was now brought. A com- 
parison of her government by bishops, with 
that by which the discipline of the Congre- 
gationalists was maintained, convinced him 
that it was not only to be preferred to theirs, 

on account of the superior advantages which 


it conferred upon the governed, but that it 
was in conformity with the apostolic model, 
and therefore to be received. Long and anx- 
iously did Johnson meditate upon these things, 
and many an earnest conference did he hold 
with his friends of Yale College, before he 
or they ventured to assert a judgment re- 
specting them. 

Not a single path was left untrodden which 
seemed likely to lead to fresh sources of 
knowledge, and not a single source was left 
unexplored. The best writers on either side 
of the controversy were carefully consulted, 
and their arguments deliberately discussed 
and weighed. As far as temporal ease and 
prospects were concerned, it would have been 
a welcome result to these inquirers, had they 
found the principles of Congregationalist gov- 
ernment to agree, in their judgment, with 
those of the primitive Church of Christ. Such 
a conclusion would have retained them in the 
peaceful discharge of their accustomed duties, 
and have preserved unbroken the cords of 


love which bound them to their kindred, and 
friends, and country. But the enjoyment of 
present ease would cease to be a blessing, if 
purchased at the cost of truth ; and, come 
therefore what might, the dictates of truth 
were to be obeyed. 

This obedience Johnson and his friends 
were prepared to render. They made no se- 
cret of their opinions, after they were fully 
formed ; still less did they attempt to recon- 
cile the maintenance of them with the ofiSces 
to which they had been appointed in Connec- 
ticut. Rumors of their altered feelings soon 
spread. An interview, held at Johnson's re- 
quest, in the summer of 1722, with Pigot, the 
Society's missionary at Stratford, showed 
plainly the quarter toward which their 
thoughts and aiBFections were tending. The 
whole province was disturbed and alarmed. 

The trustees assembled ; and, as soon as 
the annual " Commencement," in the follow- 
ing September, was ended, they requested the 
rector and six other members of the college, 


among whom were Johnson, Brown, and Wet- 
more, to appear before them, and declare their 
opinions upon the various matters at issue. 
Each in turn obeyed ^the summons ; and, pro- 
ceeding from the youngest to the eldest, ex- 
pressed, some of them, grave doubts of the 
validity of Presbyterian ordination, whilst the 
rest explicitly avowed their belief that it was 
invalid. The trustees, overwhelmed with 
astonishment and sorrow, refused to regard 
this declaration of their opinions as final. 
They requested a written report of them, and 
upon the receipt of it, sent a paper to their 
respective authors, entreating them to recon- 
sider the whole question, and expressing a 
hope that, even yet, they might be led to a 
different judgment. 

The Genernl Assembly was to meet in a 
few weeks ; and, in the interval, Saltonstall, 
the governor, out of personal regard toward 
Johnson and his friends, and a desire to avert 
the threatened rupture, proposed that they 
and the trustees should, at a meeting over 


which he consented to preside, enter into a 
further and friendly discussion of the several 
points which had been mooted. A conference 
took place, but its only result was to bring 
out a more distinct declaration by Cutler, 
Johnson, Brown, and Wetmore, of their be- 
lief that the Church of England was a true 
branch of the Church of Christ, and that it 
became their duty to enter into communion 
with her. The formal resignation of their 
respective offices in Yale College and West 
Haven immediately followed ; and, on the 
5th of November, the first three embarked 
at Boston for England. 

But the interest of this story is tempting us 
to be too diffuse, and we must hasten to a 
close. Suffice it to say, that the three candi- 
dates were ordained deacons and priests, by 
Dr. Green, Bishop of Norwich; Mr. Brown 
dying sf few days afterward, of the small- 
pox. Mr. Johnson reached Stratford, Con- 
necticut, (for which place he had been ap- 
pointed a missionary), early in November, 


1723, and was met by the people with a joy- 
ful welcome.* 

• Mr. Johnson labored at Stratford for fifty years. 

His answers to the queries issued by the Bishop of 
London will follow up this history of his ministry 
amongst " a people" whom he found "low and poor in 
fortune, yet very serious and well minded, and ready to 
entertain any instructions that may forward them in the 
ji&tha of virtue, and truth, and godliness :" 

Q. How long is it since you went over to the planta- 
tions as a missionary ? 

A. I arrived upon my charge November 1st, 1723. 

Q. Have you had any other Church before you came 
to that which you now possess ; and if you hacl, what 
Church was it, and how long have you been removed ? 

A. I was a teacher in the Presbyterian method, at 
West Haven, about ten miles off from the town, but 
never was in the service of the Established Church till 
the honorable Society admitted me into their service as 

Q. Have you been duly licensed by the Bishop of 
London to officiate as a missionary in the government 
where you now are ? 

A. 1 was licensed by your lordship to officiate as a 
missionary in this colony of Connecticut. 

Q. How long have you been inducted into your 
living ? 

A. I was admitted into this honorable Society's ser- 
vice in the beginning of January, 1722-3. 

Q. Are you ordinarily resident in the parish to 
which you have been inducted ? 

A. 1 am constantly resident at Stratford, excepting 


Before Dean Berkeley came to America, 
his fame had been spread abroad. Mr. John- 
son had conceived a high admiration of his 

the time that I am riding about to preach in the neigh- 
boring towns that are destitute of ministers. 

Q. Of what extent is your parish, and how many 
families are there in it ? 

A. The town is nigh ten miles square, and has about 
two hundred and fifty or three hundred families in it, nigh 
fifty of which are of the Established Church. But, in- 
deed, the Episcopal people of all the toyns adjacent 
esteem themselves my parishioners ; as at Fairfield about 
thirty families, the like number at New Town, at West 
Haven about ten, and sundry in other places. 

Q. Are there any infidels, bond or free, within your 
parish ; and what means are used for their conversion ? 

A. There are nigh two hundred Indians in the 
bounds of the town, for whose conversion there are no 
means used, and the like in many other towns ; and 
many negroes that are slaves in particular &,milies, some 
of which go to church, but most of them to meeting. 

Q. How oft is divine service performed in your 
church, and what proportion of the parishioners at- 
tend it ? 

A. Service is performed only on Sundays and holy days, 
and many times one hundred or one hundred and fifty 
people attend it, but sometimes not half so many, and 
sometimes twice that number, especially ujwn the three 
great festivals ; and when I preach at the neighboring 
towns, especially at Fairfield and New Town, I have a 
very numerous audience; which places, as they very much 
want, so they might be readily supplied with ministers 


character, through his writings, and he waited 
upon him soon after his arrival in Rhode 
Island, and was received with that hearty and 

firom among ourselves, and those the best that are edu- 
cated here, if there was but a bishop to ordain them. 

Q. How oft is the sacrament of the Lord*s supper 
administered, and what is the usual number of comma- 
nicants ? 

A. I administer the holy eucharist on the first Sun- 
day of every month, to about thirty and sometimes forty 
communicants, and upon the three great fgstivals, to 
about sixty. But there are nigh one hundred 
nicants here and in the towns adjacent, to whom I ad- 
minister as often as I can attend them. 

Q. At what times do you catechize the youth of your 
parish ? 

A. I catechize every Lord's Day, immediately after 
evening service, and explain the catechism to them. 

Q. Are all things duly disposed and provided in the 
church for the decent and orderly performance of divine 
service ? 

A. We have no church ; have begun to build one, 
but such is the poverty of the people, that we get along 
but very slowly. Neither have we any furniture for the 
communion, save that which Narraganset people lay 
claim to ; concerning which I have written to your lord- 
ship by my churchwarden. 

Q Of what value is your living in sterling money, 
and how does it arise ? 

A. I have £60 sterling sfettled on me by the honora- 
ble Society, and receive but very little from ray poor 
people, save now and then a few small presents. 


graceful kindness for which he was distin- 
guished. The character of his mind and his 
course of study resembled, in many respects, 

Q. Have you a house and glebe ? Is your glebe in lease, 
or let by the year, or is it occupied by yourself ? 

A. I have neither house nor glebe. 

Q. Have you more cures than one ? If you have, 
what are they, and in what manner served ? 

A. There are Fairfield, eight miles off; New Town, 
twenty ; Repton, eight ; West Haven, ten ; and New 
London, seventy miles off ; to all which places I ride, 
and preach, and administer the sacrament, as often as I 
can ; but have no asfeistance, save that one Dr. Laborie, 
an ingenious gentleman, does gratis explain the cate- 
chism at Fairfield, but all these places want ministers 

Q. Have you in your parish any public school for 
the instruction of youth ? If you have, is it endowed, 
and who is the master ? 

A. The Independents have one or two poor schools 
among them, but there are no schools of the Church of 
England in the town or colony, for which reason I have 
recommended my churchwarden to your lordship and 
the honorable Society. 

Q. Have you a parochial library ? If you have, are 
the books preserved and kept in good condition ? Have 
you any particular rules and orders for the preserving 
of them ? Are those rules and orders duly observed ? 

A. We have no library save the iClO worth which 
the honorable Society gave, which I keep carefully by 
themselves in my study, in the same condition as I keep 
my own. 


those of Berkeley ; and, from this cause, it 
was natural that their conversations in Rhode 
Island, and their correspondence afterward, 
should frequently turn upon a subject which 
had already engrossed so much of Berkeley's 
attention, namely, the efforts by which the so- 
called Freethinkers of that day sought to 
assail Christianity. Berkeley was led there- 
by to continue the investigation of arguments 
which had been urged from that quarter, and 
with which he had long been familiar; and 
his freedom from many of the distractions to 
which his duties in Ireland or in England had 
exposed him, enabled him to prosecute the 
inquiry with success. His discussions with 
Johnson served to keep his thoughts more 
closely in the same channel ; and at length 
the way was opened for him to give expres- 
sion to them in his immortal work of "Alci- 
phron ; or. The Minute Philosopher." 

This work was for the most part written, 
if not completed, by Mr. Berkeley, in Rhode 
Island ; and we may even now trace, in the 


beautiful picture which graces its introduc- 
tion, a description of his own feelings at that 
time, and the manner in which he nobly strove 
to overcome the vexations and difficulties that 
encumbered him. The scenery of the picture, 
indeed, is purely English ; and the structure 
of the dialogues that follow required that it 
should be so. But, as we gaze upon it, the 
slightest effort of the imagination may carry 
us back to the shores of Newport, and to the 
time when Berkeley was there seeking, in the 
prosecution of his great argument, a relief 
from the sickening cares and disappointments 
by which he was beset. The beginning of it 
is as follows; 

"I flattered myself, Theages, that before 
this time, I might have been able to send you 
an agreeable account of the success of the 
affair which brought me into this remote cor- 
ner of the country. But instead of this, I 
should now give you the detail of its miscar- 
riage, if I did not rather choose to entertain 
you with some amusing incidents which have 


helped to make me easy under a circumstance 
I could neither obviate nor foresee. Events 
are not in our power, but it always is to 
make a good use even of the very worst. 
And I must needs own, the course and event 
of this affair gave opportunity for reflections 
that make me some amends for a great loss of 
time, pains, and expense. A life of action, 
which takes its issue from the counsels, pas- 
sions, and views of other men, if it doth not 
draw a man to imitate, will at least teach him 
to observe. And a mind at liberty to reflect 
on its own observations, if it produce nothing 
useful to the world, seldom fails of entertain- 
ment to itself. For several months past, I 
have enjoyed such liberty and leisure in this 
distant retreat, far beyond the verge of that 
great whirlpool of business, faction, and 
pleasure, which is called the world. And a 
retreat in itself agreeable, after a long scene 
of trouble and disquiet, was made much more 
so by the conversation and good qualities of 
my host, Euphranor, who unites in his own 


person the philosopher and the farmer, two 
characters not so inconsistent in nature as by 
custom they seem to be." 

When Dean Berkeley was about to return 
to Europe, Mr. Johnson made him his final 
visit, in the course of which he ventured to 
suggest to him that, as Yale College was yet 
an infant institution, and very imperfectly 
endowed, if he should think proper to make 
some contribution to its library, the benefac- 
tion would be worthily bestowed. Within 
two years from that time, Dr. Berkeley, by 
the assistance of some of his friends, sent 
over to the college library a large collection 
of valuable books, the cost of which was said 
to have been nearly five hundred pounds ster- 
ling. And about the same time he transmit- 
ted to Mr. Johnson a deed, in which he 
conveyed to the college his farm in Rhode 
Island, consisting o* nearly one hundred 
acres ; the annual interest of which was to be 
divided between three Bachelors of Arts, who 

should appear, on examination, to be the best 


classical scholars, provided they would reside 
at college, and continue their studies during 
the three years that should elapse between 
the taking of their first and second depjrees. 
Although Mr. Johnson survived his good 
friend the dean nearly twenty years, and 
while we shall have occasion to refer to him 
again as living, it will be more convenient for 
us, in this place, to trace his career to the 

The University of Oxford conferred upon 
him the degree of Doctor in Divinity, in 1743 
— a title which he well deserved — and after 
having served the Church faithfully in the 
pulpit, and through the press, he was chosen 
President of King's (now Columbia) College, 
New- York City, in 1753. He continued to 
occupy this honorable position with great - 
credit to himself, for about ten years, when 
he resigned and retired to Stratford, to spend 
his remaining days in the midst of his old 
friends. The parish soon afterward becoming 
vacant, Mr. Johnson resumed the charge of 


it, and continued io perform the duties of 
the ministry until the close of his honored 
career. The nearer he approached his end the 
stronger did his faith become in those prin- 
ciples for which he had so long and success- 
fully labored. He lived to see the morning 
of the Epiphany, 1772, a bright and glorious 
day, and gladly announced to his family that 
he was " going home." He called to remem- 
brance, in his last moments, his friend, the 
sainted Berkeley, and the tranquillity of his 
departure, and humbly expressed a wish that, 
if it were permitted, his own death might be 
as full of peace. The desire was granted, and, 
before the close of that bright day, the good 
man expired, while seated in his chair, with- 
out a struggle or a sigh. He may be said, in 
fact, to have been changed or translated, 
rather than to have died — the peaceful seren- 
ity of his countenance remaining ' when the 
spirit had taken its flight to a better world.* 

• The beautiful biography of Dr. Johnson, by Dr. 
Chandler, once rector of St. John's Church, Elizabeth, 


New Jersey, should be read by all who can^ have access 
to it. The sketch in Sprague's Annals of the American 
Pulpit, vol. v., p. 62, is foir and unprejudiced. Other 
particulars may be found in the lives of Bishops Seabury 
and Provost, in this series. 



Publication of "Aloiphron" — Bolingbroke and Hoadley 
assail it — Dean Berkeley renews his acquaintance with 
Queen Caroline — The metaphysical circle around her 
tea-table — Something more concerning her Majesty- 
Admiration for "Butler's Analogy" — Bishop Hoadley 's 
twistings and turninp:s in the pursuit of high iKwition 
— His ambitious attempts successful— Neglect of sacred 
duties — Dr. Samuel Clarke and his heretical views — 
A degradation which the Church narrowly escax>ed — 
Bishop Sherlock — Brief outline of his career — Our in- 
troductions close. 

^ITPON Dean Berkeley's return to England, 
in 1732, he published Alciphron^ concern- 
ing the composition of which we spoke in the 
last chapter. It was carped at by Boling- 
broke, then fretting at his political ostracism, 
as "in parts hard to be understood;" and 
loudly assailed by Hoadley, who most ab- 
surdly termed it "an attempt to make non- 
sense essential to religion." But the admira- 
ble clearniess of the majority of the dialogues, 



and the general felicity of its language, secured 
for the TVork ample reputation, and for the 
author a renewal of acquaintance with Queen 
Caroline. It would seem that Hoadley's 
views of it had been presented to her Majesty 
through Mrs. Clayton, and that this, coupled 
with the prevalent antipathy to Berkeley's 
idealism, had prejudiced the queen against 
him. Certainly, in the metaphysical circle 
which surrounded Caroline's tea-table, and fa 
which Clarke at this time held a prominent 
place, Berkeley was not likely to find favor 
or justice. A philosopher who had made 
"abstract space and time" the high priori 
road " to prove the being of a God," was 
not the man to praise one who had driven 
away these abstractions from thought, and 
who, by Clarke's own confession, was "un- 
answerable." It is not impossible that, at 
these royal causeries^ learned envy may have 
detracted from Berkeley's genius, and char- 
acterized as senseless what it could not re- 


But Sherlock, afterward Bishop of London, 
who had already broken a lance with Collins, 
and who, therefore, was fully able to appre- 
ciate an attack upon « freethinking," was re- 
solved to disabuse the queen. He gave her a 
copy of AldphroTif and asked her if the author 
could be a mere enthusiast. Her Majesty had 
an intellect able to appreciate the genius and 
power of the argument, and the beauty and 
simplicity of the style, and immediately made 
Berkeley one of her most favored guests. We 
are told that at the philosophic discussions 
which i^he delighted to encourage, and in 
which she took no contemptible part, Berke- 
ley and Sherlock were ever found ranged 
against Clarke and Hoadley. 

As Queen Caroline was a good friend to 
Dean Berkeley, it will not be amiss to say a 
few words concerning her. She was the 
daughter of John Frederick, Marquis of Bran- 
denburg Anspach, and was a woman of supe- 
rior mind and polished manners ; in compari- 
son with whom, her insignificant husband. 


King George the Second, made but a sorry 
figure. To some extent she was a patron of 
literature, although she may not always have 
been judicious in the bestowal of her favors. 
It was certainly a singular taste for an ambi- 
tious and fashionable woman, which led her to 
adopt " Butler's Analogy" — the most abstruse 
and profound work in English literature — as 
one of her favorite books ; and it was no less 
discreditable to one of her friends (Bishop 
Hoadley), that he did not hesitate to say that 
he could never look into it without its giving 
him a headache. 

And this reminds us to introduce this gen- 
tleman, with a little more ceremony, to those 
who may not be acquainted with him. He 
was one of those unprincipled persons who, 
in a country where Church and State, are 
united, have been sometimes admitted to the 
functions of the sacred ministry, and who use 
their holy oflSce as they would any worldly 
profession, to push their fortunes as best they 


Beujamin Hoadley was born at Westerham, 
in Kent, in 1676, and graduated at the 
University of Cambridge, in 1695. After 
his ordination to the priesthood, in 1700, he 
was appointed to the lectureship of St. Mildred, 
in the Poultry, and it would appear that his 
pulpit abilities were not of a very popular 
order, since he tells us himself that he had 
« preached the lectureship down to <£30 per 
annum ;" too small an income for a man of 
his ambition. 

Soon afterward he published a treatise en- 
titled « The reasonableness of conformity to 
the Church of England represented to the 
Dissenting ministers, in answer to the tenth 
chapter of Mr. Calamy's abridgment of Mr. 
Baxter's Life and Times," and when his work 
was assailed, he put on the armor of a Church- 
man, and sent forth a book on Episcopacy 
which did great credit to his mental gifts. At 
this time the whigs were in power, and as they 
were no friends to Church principles, Mr. 
Hoadley felt that his only chance to secure a 


good berth would be to assail the Church, and 
undermine the foundations of the Christian 
faith. He began this unprincipled course by 
a sermon before the Lord Mayor, in 1705 ; and 
this was followed by a work against the non- 
jurors, and a discourse preached in the King's 
Chapel at St. James', on the Nature of the 
Kingdom or Church of Christ, 

The latter excited a long and vehement dis- 
pute, known by the name of the Bangorian 
controversy, in which forty or fifty tracts 
were published. The Lower House of Convo- 
cation took up Hoadley's works with warmth, 
and passed a censure upon them, as calculated 
to overturn the government and discipline of 
the Church. 

This controversy was conducted with un- 
becoming violence, and several grave divines 
forgot the dignity of their station, and the 
spirit of Christian charity, in the heat of 
party warfare. 

Pope alludes sarcastically to Hoadley's ser- 
mon, in the " Dunciad :" 


" To Laud and Tindal, prompt at priests to jeer, 
Yet silent bowed to ChrisVs no Kingdom here.** 

One of Hoadley's most powerful opponents 
was William Law,* whose admirable " Letters 
to the Bishop of Bangor," continue to be 
standard works to this day. 

The royal profligate who occupied the 
British throne, and the compliant ministry 
who yielded to his caprices, took pleasure in 

• This learned divine of the English Church was born 
at Kingscliffe in Northamptonshire, in 1668, and was edu- 
cated at Cambridge, where he obtained a fellowship. 
On the accession of George I. , refusing to take the oaths 
of allegiance, he left the university, and oflSciated as 
a curate in London, and as tutor to Edward Gibbon, 
father of the historian. He died at his native village 
in 1761. The writings of Mr. Law, although in many- 
respects excellent, partake of a gloominess and severity, 
tinged somewhat with mysticism and enthusiasm. His 
"Serious call to a Devout and Holy Life," is considered 
one of the best books of devotion in our language. Dr. 
Johnson says, that when a student at Oxford, he took it 
up " expecting to find it a dull book," but that it proved 
to be the moans of tcrrning his thoughts to religion. 
[BosweU's "Life of Johnson" (Bohn's edition), vol. 1, p. 
69]. In the early part of his career, John Wesley 
l)ecame acquainted with Mr. Law, and the reader will 
find some interesting particulars concerning their inter- 
course in Southey's " Wesley.," vol. 1, p. 88, etc. 


advancing the interests of a clergyman of 
easy conscience and with no settled princi- 
ples. Hoadley thus became, in turn, the 
Bishop of Bangor, Hereford, Salisbury, and 
Winchester, drawing the salary attached to 
his office, but neglecting its duties. He never 
visited the diocese of Bangor at all, and that of 
Winchester was long years in recovering from 
. the injury received from his unwarrantable 
indifference to its affairs. Bishop Hoadley 
lived to be eighty-five, and was buried in 
Winchester Cathedral, where a monument 
with a Latin inscription, written by himself, 
is erected to his memory. 

Such was one of the actors in the sharp 
philosophic discussions, which Queen Caroline 
took pleasure in exciting, between the learned 
divines*who thronged her court. 

But besides Hoadley, Dean Berkeley found 
another strong antagonist in Samuel Clarke. 
He was born at Norwich, in 1675, and edu- 
cated at Cambridge. He cultivated natural 
philosophy with such success, that in his 


twenty-second year he became an able advo- 
cate of the Newtonian system, and having 
entered the ministry, he found a friend and 
patron in Dr. Moore, Bishop of Norwich, and 
was appointed his chaplain. 

He was afterward selected to deliver the 
Boyle Lecture, which gave rise to his treatise 
on the « Being and Attributes of God." 

In 1706, while rector of St. Bennet, Paul's 
Wharf, London, he began to entertain hereti- 
cal notions in regard to the doctrine of the 
Trinity ; but this was no obstacle to his pre- 
ferment with those then in power. Queen 
Caroline, over whose mind he exercised con- 
siderable influence, had a strong disposition 
to have him made a bishop, but, God be 
praised, the Church was saved from this dis- 

Dr. Clarke's system was completely de- 
molished by the distinguished Waterland. 

We have one more character to introduce — 
Bishop Sherlock, who sided with Dean Berke- 
ley in his discussions with the two unsound 



theologians just referred to. This prelate 
was a younger son of the famous Dr. William 
Sherlock, and was born in London, in 1678. 
From his earliest years he showed an eager 
thirst for knowledge, and passed through 
Catharine Hall, Cambridge, with high honors 
as a scholar. After remaining some time in a 
fellowship, he was chosen Master of the Col- 
lege, and was promoted to the Deauery of 
Chichester. He was one of the champions of 
the Church who took sides against Hoadley. 
His " Discourses on Prophecy," in answer to 
infidel objections, were very able, and were 
published in 1725. Dr. Sherlock succeeded 
Hoadley in the bishopric of Bangor, and, in 
1734, in that of Salisbury. Upon the decease 
of Archbishop Potter, 1787,. he was offered 
the primacy, but he thought best to decline, 
on account of his feeble health. The next 
year, having recovered, he accepted the 
see of London, made vacant by the death of 
Bishop Gibson. , 

Bishop Sherlock was the author of " The 


Witnesses of the Resurrection of Jesus,"* and 
his sermons are among the best specimens of 
English pulpit eloquence extant. 

It was with men of this calibre that Dean 
Berkeley was brought into contact, while he 
remained in London, and he held his own 
with the best of them. 

* ^mething more about Bishop Sherlock may be 
fbond in the *' Life of Bishop Bass," page 31. 



Something to Queen Caroline's credit — Bishop Butler, 
author of "The Analogy" — Dr. Berkeley becomes 
Bishop of Cloyne — The curious way in which English 
Bishops are chosen — Brief account of the Church in 
Ireland — A strange mistake about St. Patrick — Char- 
lotte Elizabeth's Letters quoted — Much information 
in a note — Th^ Komanists have a hard question to 
settle — How the Irish were brought under the domin- 
ion of the Pope — The Church of Ireland after the Re- 
formation — The revised Prayer-book adopted — Bishop 
Berkeley's real position. 

^ITH all her faults, we must give Queen 
Caroline credit for having been in- 
strumental in promoting two such deserving 
men as Berkeley and Butler* to the Episco- 

•Dr. Joseph Butl«»i a prelate of the most distin- 
guished character and abilities, was born at Wantage, 
in Berkshire, 1692. His fother (who was a substantial* 
shopman) determined to educate him for a Presbyterian 
preacher, the lad having given early indications of rare 
abilities. While attending a Dissenting academy at 
Tewkesbury, he made extraordinary progress in the 
study of divinity, of which he gave a remarkable proof 


pate. It is said that she had secured for the 
former the deanery of Down, and that the 
king's letter had actually been made out for 
the purpose, but that, as this had been done 

in the letters addressed by ium to Dr. ^muel Clarke, 
laying before him the doubts that had arisen in his 
mind, concerning the conclusiveness of some arguments 
in the doctor's demonstration of the "Being and Attri- 
butes of God." 

The first of these letters was dated the 4th of Novem- 
ber, 1713, and the sagacity and depth of thought dis- 
played in it, immediately excited Dr. Clarke's particu- 
lar notice. This condescension encouraged Mr. Butler 
to address the doctor a second letter upon the same 
subject, which likewise was answered by him ; and the 
corres]X)ndence being carried on in three other letters, 
the whole was annexed to the celebrated treatise before 
mentioned, and the collection has been retained in all 
the subsequent editions of that work. The manage- 
ment of this correspondence was intrusted by Mr. But- 
ler to his friend and fellow pupil, Mr. Seeker, who, in 
order to conceal the affair, undertook to convey the let- 
ters to the post-office at Gloucester, and to bring back 
Dr. Clarke's answers. When Mr. Butler's name was 
discovered to the doctor, the candor, modesty, and good 
sense with which he had written, immediately procured 
him the friendship of that eminent and excellent man. 

Our young student was not, however, during his con- 
tinuance at Tewkesbury, solely employed in metaphysi- 
cal speculations and inquiries. Another subject of his 
serious consideration was the propriety of his becoming 


without the knowledge of the Dake of Dorset, 

Lord Lieutenant, his Excellency was so much 

oflfended, that the appointment was cancelled. 

But the queen had too sincere an admira- 

a dissenting minister. Accordingly, he entered into an 
examination of the principles of nonconformity; the 
result of which waB such a dissatisfaction with them as 
determined him to conform to the Established Church. 
This intention was at first disagreeable to his father, 
who endeavored to divert him from his purpose, and 
with that view, called in the assistance- of some emi- 
nent Presbyterian divines ; but finding his son's resolu- 
tion to be fixed, he at length suffered him to be removed 
to Oxford, where he was admitted a Commoner of Oriel 
CoUege, on the 17th of March, 1714. 

At what time he took orders doth not appear, nor 
who the bishop was by whom he was ordained ; but it is 
certain that he entered into the Church soon after his 
admission at Oxford, if it be true, as is asserted, that he 
sometimes assisted Mr. Edward Talbot in the divine 
service, at his living of Hendred, near "Wantage. "With 
this gentleman, who was the second son of Dr. William 
Talbot, successively Bishop of Oxford, Salisbury, and 
Durham, Mr. Butler formed an intimate friendship at 
Oriel College, which friendship laid the foundation of 
all his subsequent preferments, and procured for him a 
very honorable situation when he was only twenty-six 
years of age. For it was in 1718, that, at the recom- 
mendation of Mr. Talbot, in conjunction with that of Dr. 
Clarke, he was appointed by Sir Joseph Jekyll to be 
prrarher at the B^lls. This was three years before he 


tion for great abilities to leave the philoso- 
pher and philanthropist in obscurity, and she 
good-humoredly declared, that since they 
would not suffer Dr. Berkely to be a dean in 

had taken any degree at the university, where he did 
not go out Bachelor of Law till the 10th of June, 1721 ; 
which, however, was as soon as that degree could suita- 
bly be conferred upon him. 

Mr. Butler continued at the Rolls till 1726, in the be- 
ginming of which year he published, in one volume 
octavo, " Fifteen Sermons preached at that Chapel." 
In the meanwhile, by the patronage of Dr. Talbot, 
Bishop of Durham, to whose notice he had been recom- 
mended (together with Mr. Benson and Mr. Seeker) by 
Mr. Edward Talbot on his death-bed, our author had 
been presented, first to the rectory of Haughton, near 
Darlington, and afterward to that of Stanhope, in the 
same diocese. The beneUce of Haughton was given to 
him in 1722, and that of Stanhope in 1725. 

At Haughton there was a necessity for rebuilding a 
great part of the parsonage house, and Mr. Butler had 
neither money nor talents -for that work. Mr. Seeker, 
therefore, who had always the interest of his friends at 
heart, and acquired a very considerable influence with 
Bishop Talbot, persuaded that prelate to give Mr. But- 
ler, in exchange for Haughton, the rectory of Stanhope, 
which was not only free from any such incumbrance, 
but was likewise of much superior value, being, indeed, 
one of the richest parsonages in England. 

Whilst our author continued preacher at the Bolls 
chapel, he divided his time between his duty in town 


Ireland, he should be a bishop. Accordingly, 
in 1734, the diocese of Cloyne becoming 
vacant, he was, by letters patent, dated March 
17th, promoted to that see. He was con- 

and country, but when he quitted the Kolls, he resided, 
during seven years, wholly at Stanhope, in the conscien- 
tious discharge of every obligation appertaining to a good 
parish priest. This retirement, however, was too solitary 
for his disposition, which had in it a natural cast of gloom- 
iness. And though his recluse hours were by no m^ns 
lost, either to private improvement or public utility, 
yet he felt, at times, very painfully the want of that 
select society of friends to which he had been accus- 
tomed, and which could inspire him with the greatest 

Mr. Seeker, therefore, who knew this, was extremely 
anxious to draw him out into a more active and conspic- 
uous scene, and omitted no opportunity of expressing 
this desire to such as he thought capable of promoting 
it. Having himself been appointed king's chaplain in 
1732, he took occasion, in a conversation which he had 
the honor of holding with Queen Caroline, to mention 
to her his friend Mr. Butler. The queen said she thought 
he had been dead. Mr. Seeker assured her he was not. 
Yet her Majesty afterward asked Archbishop Blackburn 
if he was not dead ; his answer was, ** No, madam, but 
he is buried." 

Mr. Seeker continuing his purpose of endeavoring to 
bring his firiend out of his retirement, found means, 
upon Mr. Charles Talbot's being made Lord Chancellor, 
to have Mr. Butler recommended to him for his chap- 


secrated at St. Paul's Church, Dublin, on 
the 19th 'of May following, by Theophilus, 
Archbishop of Cashel, assisted by the Bishops 
of Raphoe and Killaloe. 

lain. His lordship accepted, and sent for him ; and this 
promotion caUing him to town, he took Oxford in his 
way, and was admitted there to the degree of Doctor of 
Law, on the 8th December, 1733. The Lord ChanceUor, 
who gave him also a prebend in the Chorch of Eoches- 
ter, had consented that he should reside at his jiarish of 
Stanhope one half of the year. 

Dr. Butler being thus brought back into the world, 
his merits and his talents soon introduced him to partic- 
ular notice, and paved the way for his rising to those high 
dignities which he afterward enjoyed. Jn 1736, he was 
appointed clerk of the closet to Queen Caroline ; and, in 
the same year, he presented to her Majesty a copy of his 
exceUent treatise, entitled " The Analogy of Eeligion, 
Natural and Kevealed, to the Constitution and Course ' 
of Nature." 

His attendance upon his royal mistress, by hex especial 
command, was from seven to nine in the" evening every 
day ; and though this particular relation to that excel- 
lent and learned queen was soon determined by her 
death, in 1737, yet he had been so effectuaUy recom- 
mended by her,as well as by the late Lord Chancellor 
Talbot, to his Majesty's favor, that, in the next year, he 
was raised to the highest order of the Church, by a 
nomination to the bishopric of Bristol, to which see he 
was consecrated on the 3d of December, 1738. 

King George II., not being satisfied with this proof of 


The new bishop (who, according to the cus- 
tom in monarchies, was now called " my 
lord,") repaired immediately to the Manse 
House, at Cloyne, where he constantly resided 
(except one winter, when he was in attendance 
on the Parliament in Dublin), and applied 
himself with great vigor and fidelity to the 

his regard to Dr. Butler, promoted him, in 1740, to the 
deanery of St. Paul's, London, into which he was 
installed on the 24th of May in that year. Finding 
the demands of this dignity to be incompatible with his 
parish duty at Stanhope, he immediately resigned that 
rich benefice. Besides our prelate's unremitted atten- 
tion to his peculiar obligations, he was called upon to 
preach several discourses on public occasions, which 
were afterward separately printed, and have since been 
annexed to the later editions of the. "Sermons at the 
Bolls chapel." 

In 1746, upon the death of Dr. Egerton, Bishop of 
Hereford, Dr. Butler was made clerk of the closet to the 
king; and on the 16th October, 1750, he received an- 
other distinguished mark of his Majesty's favor, by being 
translated to the see of Durham The bishop's health 
failing him, he removed to Bath, hoping that it might 
be benefited by the change ; and there he closed his 
valuable life on the 16th of June, 1752. His remains 
were buried in the Cathedral of Bristol. 

[This account is abridged from the Christian Joumai^ 
vol. 3 (1819), p. 321.] 


discharge of his episcopal duties. And here 
we stop, once more, for a few additional ex- 

The way in which bishops are chosen in 
England, is another of those things which 
show how unfortunate it is that the Church 
should be brought into bondage to the State. 

In the early ages of Christianity, bishops 
were elected by the clergy and people, as 
they are to this day in our own branch of the 
Church. In England, however, when a, bishop 
dies, or is translated to another diocese, the 
dean and chapter of the cathedral state the 
fact in due form to the king or queen, and beg 
leave to make choice of some one to fill his 
place. Thereupon the sovereign grants a 
license to them, under tlie great seal, to elect 
the person who (by what are called " letters 
missive ") has already been appointed by the 
throne, and they are at liberty to choose no 
other. Within twenty-six days after the 
receipt of this license, they are to proceed to 
election, which is done after this manner: 


the dean and chapter having made their 
choice, must certify it under their common 
seal to the sovereign, and to the archbishop of 
the province, and to the bishop elect ; and 
then the sovereign grants permission to the 
archbishop to make all . necessary arrange- 
ments for the consecration. 

This whole proceeding seems almost like a 
solemn farce to those who are accustomed to 
the arrangements of our Church, free from 
the thraldom of the State. 

And now, as Bishop Berkeley has gone back 
to his native Ireland to discharge the high and 
holy functions of his office, we must tell our 
readers something about the branch of the 
Church existing there. 

We are led to take this additional trouble, 
because it is so common with the mass of peo^ 
pie to regard the Roman Catholic as the old 
established religion of that country, and the 
clergy of the English Church as intruders into 
premises where they do not properly belong. 
Now this impression has no foundation in fact. 


Pew authentic records are left concerning 
the first introduction of the Christian Church 
into Ireland ; but this is not at all essential 
to our purpose, since, of the present Church,^ 
the founder, under God, was St. Patrick, in 
the fifth century. 

The writer may have been more ignorant 
in his youth than most persons (although he 
was called a bookworm)^ but he well remem- 
bers feeling quite indignant at reading of the 
consecration of one of our churches, which re- 
ceived the name of St. Patrick. « What !" 
thought I, "are we so badly off as to be 
obliged to borrow saints of the Romanists, 
when there are so many who professed a bet- 
ter and purer faith ?" 

I know more about St. Patrick now ; but 

perhaps some of my younger readers may be 

as much in the dark as I was. For their 

benefit, I will transcribe a short extract from 

Charlotte Elizabeth's " Letters from Ireland ;" 

and I quote from her, because her name is a 

favorite one with many who might listen 
20 ' 


with much less respect to a more learned au- 
thority : 

" A Church planted by the hands of either 
an apostle, or his immediate successor, existed 
in Ireland before the apostacy of the Bomish 
see revealed «that wicked' who has for up- 
ward of twelve hundred years usurped it, and 
made war upon the saints. Patrick was a 
Roman Briton, a member of the pure Scriptu- 
ral Church, in which Alban was the priest- 
martyr ; and the doctrine which he proclaimed 
in Ireland, not later than the fourth century, 
was that of the undefiled gospel. To the 
people of this country he became exceedingly 
dear, and his memory was held in such vene- 
ration among them, that when the Romish 
apostacy resolved to direct one of its poison- 
ous streams through Ireland, their emissary, 
Palladius, adopted the name of Patrick, and 
commenced his mission in A. D. 430, profess- 
sing to hold the same truths with that eminent 
teacher of righteousness, and thus laying the 
foundation for a confusion of the two indi- 


viduals, which involves the early history of 
the Irish in such darkness and perplexity."* 

That by a regular series of consecrations 
and ordinations, the succession from St. Pat- 

• Letter IV. — I would refer those who wish to look 
ftirther into this curious matter, to an article in the True 
Catholic^ vol. ii. (1855), page 33, and to Primitive Chris- 
tianity in Ireland, by Dr Monck Mason, and JPaimer^s 
Treatise on the Chureh, vol. i., p. 505. The following in- 
teresting particulars were published in the Banner of the 
Cross, May 6th, 1858, over the well known signature of 
" Austen :" "St. Patrick was a Briton by birth, the son 
of a British deacon, grandson of a British priest, nephew 
of a Gallic bishop, and a pupU of another. He was ad- 
mitted to orders by his uncle, St. Martin of Tours (a 
true Catholic — no Romanist), to the priesthood by his 
preceptor, St. Germain of Auxerre (a true Catholic — 
no Romanist), and afterward to the Episcopate by the 
latter, assisted by Lupus of Troyes (also a true Catholic 
— no Romanist), the apostolic grace of whose. Episcopate 
was not that of St. Peter, but of St. John ; not that of 
Rome, but of Ephesus. 

** Nor did he receive the pall of papal confirmation *> 
when made a bishop, which, according to the decretals, 
is necessary, as a mark of intercommunion and obedi- 
ence, without which no Romanist can be made a bishop. 

" Again : the metropolitical see founded by St. Pat- 
rick in Ireland, though at one time seized by the Roman 
pirate, has nevertheless been continued, by the favor of 
God, to His Church, and is the same yet held by our 
own venerable primate at Armagh. 


rick and Palladius, and the first Irish mission- 
aries, was kept up until the reign of Queen 
Elizabeth, the Irish Papists will allow. The 
question, therefore, is whether that succession 

"Once more : there is not a bishop, priest, or deacon, 
of Irish ordination, in communion with us, who cannot 
trace, if he pleases, his apostolic ancestry to St. Patrick ; 
and on the other hand, there is not one of the Roman 
obedience in Ireland, who can thus link himself^ by 
apostolic ordination, with the illustrious son of our 
more illustrious British mother. 

" The fact is, Rome of the nineteenth century has 
nothing in common with St. Patrick, to identify him as 
theirs, save in those points in which Rome agrees with 
us. St. Patrick, St. Columba, Aidan, Kentigern, Ni- 
nian, Ceadda, and the like worthies of our British 
mother, are of the same progeny as we ; as little like 
Pio Nono, as St. Ambrose of Milan resembles the 

papal Bishop of Melipotamus in partihus 

By birth, by baptism, by orders, and succession of the 
Episcopate, St. Patrick is ours ; linked by apostolic ties, 
not to Rome, but to the G-allic see, whence we have that 
protest against Rome, and the * Defence of the Catholio 
Faith,' written by Vincent of Lerins, brother of Lupus 
of Troyes, who consecrated * the Apostle of Ireland ;' 
a ' Defence ' that aided so materially our Granmers and 
Ridleys in procuring emancipation * from the tyranny of 
the Bishop of Rome,* and all his detestable enormities. 

" Whatever legends Rome may bring from the Acta 
Sanctorum^ or the Vies des Saintes, in order to identify 
St Patrick with them, need only be oast aside as chaff." 


was at that time lost ? The burden of proof 
rests with our opponents, and we defy them to 
prove that such was the case. It is a well 
known fact, that of all the countries of Europe, 
there is not one in which the process of the 
Reformation was carried on so regularly, so 
canonically, so quietly, as it was in Ireland. 

Carte, the biographer of Ormond, having 
observed that the Popish schism did not com- 
mence in England until the twelfth year of 
Queen Elizabeth's reign, but that for eleven 
years those who most favored the pretensions 
of the pope conformed to the reformed Cath- 
olia Church of England, remarks: "This 
case was much the same in Ireland, where the 
bishops complied with the Reformation, and the 
Roman Catholics (meaning those who after- 
ward became Roman^ instead of remaining 
reformed Catholics) resorted in general to the 
parish churches in which the English service 
was used, until the end of Queen Elizabeth's 

It is here stated that the bishops of the 


Church of Ireland, that is (as the Papists will 
admit, the then successors of St. Patrick and 
his suffragans) those who had a right to re- 
form the Church of Ireland, consented to the 
Reformation ; and that, until the end of Queen 
Elizabeth's reign (and she reigned above forty- 
four years), there was no pretended Church, 
under the dominion of the pope, opposed to 
the true Catholic Church, as is unfortunately 
now the case. The existing clergy of the 
Church of Ireland, whether we regard their 
order or their mission, and consequently the 
Church itself, are the only legitimate succes- 
sors of those by whom that Church was 

That in the Church of Ireland, as well as 
in the Church of England, corruptions in doc- 
trine as well as in practice prevailed before 
the Reformation, and that the Pope of Rome 
gradually usurped over it an authority di- 
rectly contrary to one of the canons of a 
general council of the Church Universal (that 
of Ephesus), we fully admit. But that usur- 


pation was resisted and renounced, and those 
* corruptions removed and provided against at 
the Beformation. * 

After the English Reformation the Irish 
Church received the English liturgy, in con- 
formity with the principles now professed by 
the English government (though not always 
consistently or fairly carried out), of promo- 
ting a close ecclesiastical unity between the 
two countries. Article^ of religion, of a Cal- 
vinistic tendency, were passed by the Irish 
Convocation of 1615, but in 1635 the English 
Articles were received and approved by a 
canon of Convocation, and have ever since 
been subscribed by Irish clergymen. In 1662 
the revised Prayer-book of England was 
adopted by the Irish Convocation. At the 
time of the union of the two kingdoms the 
two Churches were united, under the title of 
the United Church of England and Ireland.* 

Thus we see that when good Dr. Berkeley 

• These facts are condensed from Hook's Church Die 


was made a bishopj and sent over to Ireland, 
it was not as an intruder, but as one of the 
Successors of the true and lawful pastors of 
the flock, placed over it in the early days of 
the Church. 



Cloyne now, and what it was a hundred and thirty 
years ago — The ctfrrent of life flowing smoothly — A 
difficult position, but one of usefulness and happiness 
— Kindly intercourse with Koman Catholics — Contro- 
versy with the mathematicians — The occasion which 
started it— Publication of "The Analyst" — The 
Blasters — Failure of the potatoe crop — Treatise on 
Tar Water— Maxims concerning patriotism — Two 
letters to Smibert 

ti2?HE traveller who now visits Cloyne, will 
* find it a town of less importance, in some 
respects, than when Bishop Berkeley lived 
there. It is no longer an episcopal city, the 
diocese being merged in that of Cork. The 
population of the place is not much more than 
two thousand ; and, although it is well built, 
it wears the appearance of decay. Its princi- 
pal edifices are a gothic cathedral, dating 
back to the sixth century ; the old episcopal 
palace, now a private residence ; the Romish 


cathedral ; a round tower ; the remains of an 
ancient castle ; a church, nunnery, and mon- 

The school endowed by Bishop Crowe, in 
1719, is still in existence. 

Here, in contentment and peace, the current 
of Bishop Berkeley's life flowed on, unbroken 
by many incidents, and reflecting, generally, 
images of domestic tranquillity and peace. 
The narrative of the seventeen years of his 
episcopate, is a specimen of that exercise of 
virtue, accompanied by external blessings, in 
which Aristotle places the happiness of man. 

At Cloyne, as in the rest of Ireland at this 
period, the elements of society were jarring 
and unkindly ; but though he could not fuse 
them into concord, he combined them into 
harmony with himself. He was placed among 
an aristocracy, which differences of race and 
faith, and iniquitous laws, made tyrannical 
toward their dependents, and which gave too 
faithful an image of a rapacious and ignorant 
squirearchy. He was a dignitary of a Church 


which had been perverted into an outwork of 
the Protestant garrison of Ireland, which was 
only known to the people through the tithe 
proctor and his bailiffs, and which had utterly 
been divorced from its real purpose. Around 
him grew up in helplessness and penury a 
people who clung with eager faith to their 
persecuted Church, who were proscribed by 
law from rising in society, and who, there- 
fore, had fallen into that indolent listlessness 
which ever characterizes slaves. 

But, though exposed to influences which 
were calculated to cripple his usefulness, to 
limit the sphere of his virtues, and perhaps to 
fill him with disgust, Berkeley managed to 
make his presence felt with beneficent author- 
ity throughout the whole of his diocese. He 
conciliated the Protestant squirearchy by the 
amiability of his nature and the dignity of his 
manners, and by that weight of character 
which is the privilege of worth. He made 
great eflforts to raise the lower orders in his 
diocese, by encouraging manufactures, estab- 


lishing schools, and personally attending to 
their welfare. 

As, doubtless, he felt himself debarred by 
his position from attaining their full confi- 
dence, he applied to their despised clergy to 
aid him in the good work. A pamphlet which 
he addressed to them, under the name of a 
Word to the Wise, is a surviving record of his 
liberal feelings toward his Roman Catholic 
neighbors, and of his earnest desire for their 
amelioration. It admits the many grievances 
to which they are exposed, but urges on the 
priesthood the duty of encouraging them to 
industry. It closes by expressing a hope that 
both Protestants and Roman Catholics in Ire- 
land might bury their animosities in love for 
their common country, and in doing manfully 
the work of the Author of their faith. 

It is not surprising that such sentiments, 
illustrated too in daily practice, should at last 
have joined the Protestant bishop and the 
Roman Catholic clergy in real good will. 

In 1749 he received the thanks of the lat- 


ter in his diocese, for "the manner of treat- 
ing person,^ in their circumstances so very 
singular," and from this time, he was com- 
pletely trusted and beloved by their flocks. 
At a time when, probably, no other Protestant 
bishop in Ireland cast a thought upon the 
neglected Roman Catholic peasantry, Berke- 
ley was winning their aflfectionate regard, and 
throughout no small sphere, spreading « good 
will among men." 

While diligently discharging the important 
duties of his office. Bishop Berkeley continued 
to use his plan, whenever occasion required, 
and we find him engaging in a controversy 
with the mathematicians of Great Britain and 
Ireland, which made a good deal of noise in 
the literary world. The occasion was this : 
Mr. Addison had given the bishop an account 
of their common friend Dr. Garth's beha- 
viour in his last illness, which was equally 
unpleasant to both those excellent advocates 
of revealed religion. For when Mr. Addison 
went to see the doctor, and began to dis- 



course with him seriously about preparing for 
his approaching dissolution, the other made 
answer, " Surely, Addison, I have good reason 
not to believe those trifles, since my friend, 
Dr. Halley, who has dealt so much in demon- 
stration, has assured me that the doctrines of 
Christianity are incomprehensible, and the 
religion.itself an imposture." 

The bishop, therefore, took arms against 
this redoubtable dealer in demonstration, and 
addressed The Analyst to him, with a view of 
showing that mysteries in faith were unjustly 
objected to by mathematicians, who admitted 
much greater mysteries, and even falsehoods' 
in science, of which he endeavored to prove 
that the doctrine of fluxions furnished an emi- 
nent example. Such an attack upon what had 
hitherto been looked upon as impregnable, 
produced a number of warm answers, to which 
the bishop replied once or twice. 

In 1735 he published The Querist^ a trea- 
tise of extraordinary merit, to which we shall 
revert hereafter. In the following year the 


Existence of a blasphemous society in Dublin, 
named the Blasters, called forth from him an 
indignant reclamation, and induced him to 
speak with great effect in the Irish House of 

About 1740, that precarious root which, 
even then, was the staple of the peasant's 
food in Ireland, suddenly failed. There was 
then no Imperial Parliament to shield penury 
from famine, no Poor Law to force property 
to support the poor, no possible organization 
to protect the starving crowds.* The cruel 
sufferings, the deaths by hunger, the melan- 
choly scenes which then were witnessed, are 
described by Berkeley, and were long remem- 
bered in Ireland. After famine came disease, 
and it seems to have been heavy i:: the dio- 
cese of Cloyne. Berkeley invented a remedy, 
and found it so efl&cacious that, in 1744, he 
gave it to the world in his Siris ; or, A Trea- 
tise on Tar Water : a work in which he details 
all the virtues of his specific, and with extra- 
ordinary but somewhat misplaced argument 


and learning, tracks them beyond their ma- 
terial and formal to their efficient cause, the 
mind of God. 

The list of his works is closed by his Max- 
ims Concerning Patriotism; a satire upon a 
class then prevalent in Ireland, and perhaps 
even yet not unknown in that country, the 
tribe of noisy and pretentious place-hunters. 
It would seem as if, in these his later years, 
the duties of his station, the care of his family, 
and the tendency of experience to sober 
thought, had generally checked his love of 
speculation, and given his mind a bias to prac- 
tical affairs^ 

Thus, happy in a family which grew around 
him to love him, and followed everywhere by 
affection and esteem, Berkeley passed onward 
from manhood to old age. His correspon- 
dence gives us a picture of his life. 

Early in the morning he betook himself to 
Plato, to whose genius he has paid many elo- 
quent tributes, perhaps seeking in that great 
thinker a supporter of his own philosophy, 


perhaps musing on the fascinating pages of the 
Republic^ or perhaps rejoicing that Revelation 
had solved the problem of the Phaedo. The 
day he spent in the duties of his episcopate — 
conversing with his clergy, visiting the poor, 
distributing alms, encouraging industry. The 
evening saw him quietly at home, teaching his 
children, or watching the canvas become ani- 
mated by the painting of his wife, or listening 
to her voice in the harmonies of Handel or 

Nor are we without his own record of his 
external life. He almost persuades Pope to 
visit a neighborhood sacred to Spenser. He 
gives a passing tribute to Swift, when at 
length the grave had closed over his awful 
old age. He cannot help showing a little 
satisfaction at the defeat of his old thwarter, 
Walpole. He watches the career of Charles 
Edward with some interest and alarm ; is 
very indignant with Cardinal Fleury; and 
betrays a warm sympathy with the cause of 
Maria Theresa. 



It would also appear from his letters, that 
Chesterfield was desirous to raise him to the 
primacy ; he certainly had the refusal of the 
see of Clogher ; but, as might have been ex- 
pected, he preferred to remain where his life 
was so happy, and where he was so secure of 
many friends.* 

We shall close the chapter with two letters, 
addressed by the bishop to his old friend, 
Smibert. Our young readers will observe in 
these a peculiar custom of signing the Chris- 
tian name with that of the diocese, instead of 
the surname ; a custom which is still con- 

" Clotne, Slst of May, 1735. 

« Dear Mr. Smibert : 

«A great variety and hurry of affairs, 
joined with ill state of health, hath deprived 
me of the pleasure of corresponding with you 
for this good while past, and indeed I am very 
sensible that the task of answering a letter is 
so disagreeable to you, that you can well 

* British Quarterly Review, 


dispense with receiving one of mere compli- 
ment, or which doth not bring something per- 
tinent and useful. You are the proper judge 
whether the following suggestions may be so 
or no. I do not pretend to give advice, I 
only offer a few hints for your own reflec- 

" What if there be in my neighborhood a 
great trading city ? What if this city be 
four times as populous as Boston, and a hun- 
dred times as rich ? What if there be more 
faces to paint, and better pay for paint- 
ing, and yet nobody to paint them ? Whether 
it would be disagreeable to you to receive 
gold instead of paper ? Whether it might be 
worth your while to embark with your busts, 
your prints, and your drawings, and once 
more cross the Atlantic ? Whether you might 
not find full business in Cork, and live there 
much cheaper than in London ? Whether all 
these things put together might not be worth 
a serious thought ? I have one more question 
to ask, and that is, whether myrtles grow in 


or near Boston without pots, stoves, or green- 
houses, in the open air I I assure you they do 
in my garden. So much for the climate. 
Think of what hath been said, and God di- 
rect you for the best. 

« I am, good Mr. Smibert, your affectionate 

humble servant, 

« George Cloyne." 

« P. S. — My wife is exceedingly your hum- 
ble servant, and joins in compliments both to 
you and yours. We should be glad to hear 
the state of your health and family. We 
have now three boys — doubtful which is the 
prettiest. My two eldest passed well through 
the small-pox last winter. I have my own 
health better in Cloyne than I had either in 
Old England or New." 

The second letter to the great painter is 
dated about a year afterward : 

" Oloynb, 30tk of June, 1736. 

"Dear Sir: 

. " In this remote corner of Imokilly, where 
I hear only the rumors and echoes of things, 


I know not whether you are still sailing on 
the ocean, or already arrived to take posses- 
sion of your new dignity and estate. In the 
former case, I wish you a good voyage ; in 
the latter, I welcome you and wish you joy. 
I have a letter written and lying by me these 
three years, which I knew not whether or 
how to send you. But now you are returned 
to our hemisphere, I promise myself the plea- 
sure of being able to correspond with you. 
You, who live to be a spectator of old scenes, 
are come into a world much madder and older 
than that you left. We also in this island are 
growing an odd and mad people. We were 
odd before, but I was not sure of our having 
the genius necessary to become mad. But 
some late steps of a public nature give sufficient 
proof thereof. Who knows but when you 
have settled your affairs, and looked about 
and laughed enough in England, you may 
have leisure and curiosity to visit this side of 
the water ? You may land within two miles 
of my house, i n 1 find that from Bristol to 


CloyDG IS a shorter and much easier journey 
than from London to Bristol. I would go 
about with you, and show you some scenes 
perhaps as beautiful as you have seen in all 
your travels. My own garden is not without 
its curiosity, having a great number of myr- 
tles, several of which are seven or eight feet 
high. They grow naturally, with no more 
trouble or art than gooseberry bushes. This 
is literally true. Of this part of the world 
it may be truly said, that it is 

" Ver ubi longum lepidasque probet 
Jupiter brumas. ' ' 

« My wife most sincerely salutes you. We 

should, without compliment, be overjoyed to 

see you. I am in hopes soon to hear of your 

welfare, and 

« Remain,* dear sir, 

« Tour most obedient and affectionate servH, 

G. Cloyne." 



The translation of bishops — A noble resolution nobly 
kept — A great mind stooping to lowly duties — Going 
back to American affairs — Refunding the money sub- 
scribed for the Bermuda scheme — Interesting letter 
— List of useful books to be sent to Harvard College — 
Sermon at the anniversary meeting of 1732 — Account 
of the New England missionaries — The " Brethren of 
the Separation" — Interest in American colleges — 
Bishop Berkeley's sympathy for the Indians and Ne- 
groes of Rhode Island. 

Sg^HE system of translation,* as it is called 
'^ in England, L 6., of removing a bishop 
from one diocese to another more desirable, 
appears to us a very objectionable one ; and 

♦ To show that Dr. Berkeley was not alone in his 
opinion about the translation of bishops, we quote the 
following f5rom the saintly Bishop Wilson, Sacra Privata 
(p. 77.) 

" Self-love is too often at the bottom, and not the 
glory of God, or the good of souls. When men's labors 
are attended with tolerable success, yet because either 
they can better their temporal condition, or think ^that 
a more public station would be more suitable to their 
great capacities, they leave their station for one more 


this would seem to have been Dr. Berkeley's 
opinion in regard to it. Before his consecra- 
tion as Bishop of Cloyne, he formed the reso- 
lution never to change his see. Temptations 
were not wanting to turn him aside from this 
purpose, for humble and unaspiring as he was, 
the Earl of Chesterfield sought him out, and 
as a tribute to exalted merit, offered him the 
Bishopric of Clogher, where he was told that ho 
might immediately receive fines to the amount 
of ten thousand pounds. Having a wife and 
children to provide for, some would have ex- 
cused him had he accepted the proposal, but 

ftill of dangers, without any prospect of being more 
serviceable to God, or to His Church, and the souls of 
men; not considering that this is the voice of pride, 
self-love, and covetousness, and an evil example to 
others, to whom we do or should preach humilitY, as 
the very foundation of Christianity. 

" The greater share we have in the authority of Jesus 
Christ, the greater must we expect to have in His suffer- 
ings ; the cross being the reward of faithful pastors. 

" To leave a clergy and a people to whom one is per- 
fectly well known, to go to another to whom one is a 
stranger, and this for the sake of riches, which are sap- 
posed to have been renounced — this was unknown to the 
first ag es of Christianity. * * 


the noble man declined the Bishopric of Clog- 
her, and the offer which had accdmpanied 
that proposal, of any other translation which 
might become feasible during Lord Chester- 
field's administration. Before the close of 
this period the primacy became vacant, and 
on this occasion the bishop said to Mrs, 
Berkeley, " I desire to add one more to the 
list of Churchmen who are evidently dead to 
ambition and avarice." 

He learned to know the wants of the peo- 
ple of his diocese, and they soon appreciated 
the pure and benevolent motive which kept 
him among them. It is pleasant to remember 
that the same great mind which had aston- 
ished and instructed the world by its philo- 
sophical researches, could find satisfaction in 
caring for the welfare of the poor and low- 
ly. The following brief extract is a case in 

" Our spinning school is in a thriving way. 

The children begin to find a pleasure in being 

paid in hard money, which I understand they 


will not give to their parents, but keep to 
buy clothes for themselves. Indeed, I find it 
difficult and tedious to bring them to do this, 
but I believe it will now do. I am building 
a work-house for sturdy vagrants, and design 
to raise about two acres of hemp, for employ- 
ing them." 

And here, as being a convenient place for 
our purpose, we recur once more to American 
affairs. Upon his return to England, after 
his unsuccessful visit to the New World, Dean 
Berkeley lost no time in giving back to his 
friends the several sums which they had sub- 
scribed to his Bermuda scheme ; and finding, 
after an interval of fifteen or sixteen years, 
that a sum of <£200 still remained unclaimed, 
and that no means were left open to him of 
ascertaining to whom it belonged, he pro- 
posed to make over the whole of such balance 
to the Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospel in Foreign Parts. His letter (en- 
dorsed 1747) to the secretary will best ex- 
plain his views on the subject : 

• funds for gospel pubposbs, 255 

« Rev. Sib : 

"Two hundred pounds of the amount of 
money contributed toward the college in- 
tended at Bermuda, I have left many years 
lodged in the bank of Messrs. Hoare and Ar- 
nold, of Fleet street, designing to return it 
(as I had already done by other sums) to the 
donors, when known. But, as these continue 
still unknown, and there is no likelihood of 
my ever knowing them, I think the properest 
use that can be made of that sum is, to place 
it in the hands of your Society for Propaga-: 
ting the Gospel, to be employed by them in 
the furtherance of their good work, in such 
manner as to them shall seem most useful. 
If the Society thinks fit, I believe fifty pounds 
of it might be usefully employed in purchas- 
ing the most approved writings of the divines 
of the Church of England, to which I would 
have added the Earl of Clarendon's " History 
of the Civil Wars," an^ the whole sent as a 
benefaction to Harvard College, at Cam- 
bridge, near Boston, New England, as a 


proper means to inform their judgment, and 
dispose them to think better of the Church. 
" I am, Kev. sir, 
" Your feithful, humble servant, 

«G. Cloynb." 

The postscript of a second letter upon the 
same subject is also extant, in which Berke- 
ley sets down, according to a request made to 
him to that eflFect, a list of the books which 
he thought most likely to be useful : 

"Hooker, Chillingworth, the Sermons of 
Barrow^ Tillotson, Sharp, and Clarke, Scott's 
Christian Life, Pearson on the Creed, Burnet 
on the Thirty-nine articles, Burnet's History 
of the Reformation, Abp. Spotswood's His- 
tory of the Church of Scotland, Clarendon's 
History, Prideaux's Connection, Cave's His- 
toria Literaria Ecclesiae, Hammond's Annota- 
tions, Poole's Synopsis Criticorum, the Patres 
Apostolici, published by Le Clerc, with the 
Dissertations of Pearson, etc., on the Epistles 
of Ignatius. These, I guess, will amount to 
about thirty pounds ; if approved of, the So- 


ciety will be pleased to add as many more as 
will make up the fifty pounds, or otherwise 
they will be pleased to name them all." 

Some years before he exhibited this latter 
proof of active and judicious kindness, Berke- 
ley had conferred a greater favor upon the 
Society to whom he made this proposal, in the 
wise and persuasive reasoning of his sermon 
addressed to them at the anniversary meeting 
in 1732. It was the first occasion upon which 
the preacher had personally visited those dis- 
tant fields of duty to which he directed the 
attention of others ; and this fact, supported 
by the extraordinary reputation of the man 
himself, could not fai' to stamp upon his 
words a deeper impress of authority. 

The information which it contains of the 
condition of our Western colonies at that 
time, is, for the most part, confined to that 
portion of them in which he had lived, and 
of which, as an eye-witness, he could dis- 
tinctly speak. His description of the inhabi- 
tants of Rhode Island has been already cited. 


I will Lere, therefore, only insert his descrip- 
tion of the clergy who had been appointed to 
minister in that and the adjacent provinces. 
Speaking of the obligation laid upon the 
English planters to set up before the heathen 
the example of a godly life, he adds : 

" The missionaries employed by this venera-^ 
ble Society have done, and continue to do, 
good service in bringing those planters to a 
serious sense of religion, which it is hoped 
will in time extend to others. I speak it 
knowingly, that the ministers of the Gospel in 
provinces which go by the name of New Eng- 
land, sent and supported at the expense of 
this Society, have by their sobriety of man- 
ners, discreet behavior, and a competent de- 
gree of useful knowledge, shown themselves 
worthy the choice of those who sent them, 
and particularly in living on a more friendly 
footing with their Brethren of the Separation ; 
who, on their part, are also very much come 
oflf from that narrowness of spirit which for- 
merly kept them at such an unamicable dis- 


tance from ns. And as there is reason to ap- 
prehend that part of America could not have 
been thus distinguished, and provided with 
such a number of proper persons, if one half 
of them had not been supplied out of the dis- 
senting seminaries of the country — who, in 
proportion as they attain to more liberal im- 
provements of learning, are observed to quit 
their prejudice toward an Episcopal Church — 
so I verily think it might increase the num- 
ber of such useful men, if provision were made 
to defray their charges in coming hither to 
receive holy orders ; passing and repassing the 
ocean, and tarrying the necessary time in 
London, requiring an expense that many are 
not able to bear. It would also be an en- 
couragement to the missionaries in general, 
and produce good effects, if the allowance of 
certain missionaries were augmented in pro- 
portion to- the service they had done, and the 
time they had spent in their mission. These 
hints I venture to suggest, as not unuseful 
in an age wherein all humane encourage- 


ments are found more necessary than at the 
first propagation of the gospel." 

The above passage is worthy of notice, not 
merely as recording the testimony of the most 
competent of witnesses to the high character 
of the Society's missionaries in that day and 
country, but also as showing the feeling 
which Berkeley entertained toward our 
« Brethren of the Separation," and the duty 
which he believed was incumbent upon our 
Church to observe respecting them. He knew, 
as well as any man, the causes which had 
divided the brethren, and made New Eng- 
land the chief habitation of Separatists. The 
name of " brethren," which he gave to them, 
was a proof that, in bis judgment, the oflSces 
of brotherly kindness were still their due, 
and that only by the simple and faithful dis- 
charge of .these could the remembrance of 
former animosities be obliterated, and the 
work of reconciliation made complete. It 
was a subject, therefore, of real joy to him, to 
find a way gradually opening to that end. 


The interest which Dean Berkeley had 
shown in the schools and colleges of New 
England, during his residence in this country, 
continued unabated until the close of life. 
His benefactions to Yale and Harvard must 
always be remembered with gratitude. 

When another institution was about to. be 
established at New-York, of which Dr. Johnson 
became president, Bishop Berkeley was con- 
sulted on all important points, and his advice 
was regarded with the highest respect. Before 
concluding our notice of the anniversary ser- 
mon before quoted, we must allow our readers 
to see ^what the faithful preacher said in re- 
gard to the Indians and Negroes of Rhode 

The Indians of that colony, who had for- 
merly been computed to have been many thou- 
sands, were then reduced to one thousand. 
And this reduction Berkeley ascribes not only 
to war and sickness, but more than all, to 
the indulgence of strong drink, which they 
had first learnt from their English masters, 


and which, being communicated through them 
to other Indian tribes, was spreading havoc 
far and wide. 

" The Negroes," he proceeds, " in the gov- 
ernment jf Rhode Island, are about half as 
many more than the Indians, and both to- 
gether scarcely amount to i, seventh part of 
the whole colony. The religion of these peo- 
ple, as is natural to suppose, takes after their 
masters. Some few are baptized, several 
frequent the different assemblies, and far the 
greater part none at all. An ancient apathy 
to the Indians, whom it seems our first plan- 
ters (therein, as in certain other particulars, 
afifecting to imitate Jews rather than Chris- 
tians) imagined they had a right to tread 
under foot as Canaanites or Amalekites — 
together with an irrational contempt of the 
blacks, as creatures of another species, who 
had no right to be instructed or admitted to 
the sacraments — has proved a main obstacle 
to the conversion of these poor people. To this 
may be added an erroneous notion that the 


being baptized is inconsistent with a state of 
Blaverj. To undeceive them in this particu- 
lar, which had too much weight, it seemed a 
proper step, if the opinion of His Majesty's 
Attorney and Solicitor-General could be pro- 
cured. This opinion they charitably sent 
over, signed with their own hands, which was 
accordingly printed in Rhode Island, and dis- 
persed throughout the plantations. I heartily 
wish it may produce the intended efifect." 



Mrs. Berkeley— Her taste for painting — She sends a 
specimen of her skill to Mr. Prior — The fine arts en- 
couraged in Imokilly — " Almost shaken to pieces" — 
Dean* Gervais, a specimen of self-indulgent clergy- 
men — Tar and honey— Musical instruments— Sir Rob- 
ert Walpole in trouble — Seeks happiness in retire- 
ment — More about the fine arts — Death of Mr. Prior 
— His monument — Prince Charles makes a stir in 
Scotland— The Emerald Isle has its own troubles— 
The insurrection of the rapparees. 

^ROM all that we can learn of Mrs. 
Berkeley, she must have been a help meet 
for the excellent bishop. The first years of 
her married life were passed in America, and 
when, as the head of the diocese of Cloyne, 
it was proposed to him to exchange this poor 
living for a better one, the devoted wife most 
warmly seconded the conscientious resolution 
of the husband, that the union of a bishop 
with his diocese, like the holy bands of mat- 
rimony, should only be sundered by the stroke 


of death. Mrs. Berkeley had a taste for 
painting, and we can sympathize with her in 
her anxiety to secure a good likeness of the 
bishop. The following extract from a letter 
to his friend Prior, explains itself. It is 
dated July 3d, 1746: 

« My wife, with her compliments sends you 
a present by the Cork carrier who set out 
yesterday. It is an offering of the first fruits 
of her painting. She began to draw in last 
November, and did not stick to it closely, but 
by way of amusement only, at leisure hours. 
For my part, I think she shows a most uncom- 
mon genius; but others may be supposed to 
judge more impartially than I. My two 
younger children are beginning to employ 
themselves in the same way. In short, here 
are two or three families in Imokilly* bent 
upon painting, and I wish it was more gen- 
eral among the ladies and idle people, as a 
thing that may divert the spleen, improve the 

• The viUage of Cloyne is in the barony of Imokilly, 
County of Cork. 


manufactures, and increase the wealth of the 

In a subsequent letter the bishop speaks, in 
a playful way, of just having returned from a 
tour of one hundred and thirty miles through 
his diocese, ih which he had been " almost 
shaken to pieces" by the rough conveyance 
and bad roads. 

Another correspondent of Bishop Berke- 
ley's was the Rev. Mr. Gervais, whom he 
sometimes addresses as "Mr. Dean." We 
learn, incidentally, that this gentleman was a 
native of Montpelier, and that he was carried 
out of France when an infant, on the revoca- 
tion of the edict of Nantes, in 1680. Not 
from his sending a saddle of venison as a 
present to the inmates of the episcopal 
palace at Cloyne, but from the fact that the 
bishop congratulates him, on one occasion, 
upon his recovering from the gout, saying, " I 
think, Mr. Dean, you have paid for the gay 
excursion you made last winter to the metrop- 
olis and the court," we may conclude that Mr. 


Gervais belonged to the self-indulgent class 
of clergymen who do little good for the Church, 
and who would make very poor martyrs. 

The following letter to this amiable per- 
sonage, contains some references to public 
affairs. It is dated 

" Cloyijb, FeVy 2d, 1742. 

"I condole with you on your cold, a cir- 
cumstance that a man of fashion who keeps 
late hours can hardly escape. We find here 
that a spoonful, half tar and half honey, 
taken morning, noon, and night, proves a 
most effectual remedy in that case. My wife, 
who values herself on being in your good 
graces, expresses great gratitude for your care 
in procuring the psalms, and is doubly pleased 
with the prospect of your being yourself the 
bearer. The instrument she desired to be 
provided was a large four-stringed bass viol ; 
but besides this, we shall also be extremely 
glad to get that excellent bass viol which 
came from France, be the number of strings 
what it will. I wrote, indeed, (not to over- 


load you) to Dean Brown* to look out for a 
six-stringed bass viol, of an old make and 
mellow tone. But the more we have of good 
instruments the better, for I have got an 
excellent master, whom I have taken into my 
family, and all my children, not excepting my 
little daughter, learn to play, and are prepa- 
ring to fill my house with harmony against all 
events ; that if we have worse times we may 
have better spirits. Our French woman is 
grown more attentive to her business, and so 
much altered for the better that my wife is 
not now inclined to part with her, but is, 
nevertheless, very sensibly obliged by your 
kind offer to look out for another. What 
you say of a certain pamphlet is enigmatical ; 
I shall hope to have it explained viva voce. 
As this corner furnishes nothing worth send- 
ing, you will pardon me if, instead of other 

• Jammatt Brown, then Dean of Ross, Bishop of Kill- 
aloe in 1743, of Dromore in 1745, of Cork the same 
year, of Elphin in 1772, and Archbishop of Taam in 
1776, died in 1782. 


news, I transcribe a paragraph of a letter I 
lately received from an English bishop: "We 
are now shortly to meet again in parliament, 
and by the proceedings upon the state of the 
nation Sir Robert's fate will be determined. 
He is doing all he can to recover a majority 
in the House of Commons, and is said to have 
succeeded as to some particulars ; but in his 
main attempt, which was that of uniting the 
prince and his court to the king's, he has been 
foiled. The Bishop of Oxford* was em- 
ployed to carry the proposal to the prince, 
which was that he should have the J61 00,000 
a year he had demanded, and his debts paid. 
But the prince, at the same time that he ex- 
pressed the utmost respect and duty to his 
Majesty, declared so much dislike to his min- 
ister, that without his removal he will hearken 
to no terms." 

Those familiar with English history during 
the reign of the Second George, will remem- 

• Seeker. 


ber how long Walpole had fought the battles 
of the king, and how skilfully he had man- 
aged to postpone his own coming doom. On 
the very day that Bishop Berkeley was writing 
to his friend, the affairs of the crafty Minis- 
ter of State were brought to a crisis. Being 
left in a hopeless minority on some impor- 
tant vote in the House of Commons, he was 
so mortified that he retired in a high state of 
displeasure, soon afterward resigning his em- 
ployment and oflSces. On the next day after 
this adverse vote (February 3d), the king 
adjourned parliament until the 18th. 

After twenty years of almost absolute power 
Walpole retired to his magnificent seat at 
Hailghton, with the title of Earl of Oxford, 
there to seek for happiness in retirement and 
repose. We hope that he repented of his 
shabby behavior toward Dean Berkeley, in 
regard to the endowment of his Indian college 
in North America. We have room for only 
one more of the bishop's letters to Mr. 
Prior : 


"February 2d, 1749. 
« Three days ago we received the box of 
pictures. The two men's heads with rufifs are 
well done ; the third is a copy, and ill color- 
ed; they are all Flemish, so is the woman, 
which is also very well painted, though it hath 
not the beauty and freedom of an Italian pen- 
cil. The two Dutch pictures, containing ani- 
mals, are well done as to the animals, but the 
human figures and sky are ill done. The two 
pictures of ruins are very well done, and are 
Italian. My son William* had already copied 
two other pictures of the same kind, and by 
the same hand. He and his sister are both 
employed in copying pictures at present, which 
shall be despatched as soon as possible — after 
which they will set about some of yours. 
Their stint, on account of health, is an hour 
and a half a day for painting ; so I doubt two 
months will not suffice for copying; but no 

• A fine youth, the second son of the bishop, whose loss 
at an early age was thought to have stuck too close to 
his other's heart. 


time shall be lost, and great care taken of 
your pictu5/es, for which we hold ourselves 
much obliged. 

" Our round tower stands where it did, but 
a little stone arched vault on the top was 
cracked, and must be repaired ; the bell, also, 
was thrown down, and broke its way through 
three boarded stories, but remains entire. The 
door was shivered into many small pieces and 
dispersed, and there was a stone forced out of 
the wall. The whole damage, it is thought, 
will not amount to twenty pounds. The thun- 
der-clap was by far the greatest that I ever 
heard in Ireland." 

Two years after the date of this letter Mr. 
Prior died, at the age of seventy-one. A 
monument was placed in Christ Church cathe- 
dral, Bishop Berkeley preparing a handsome 
inscription in Latin, to which these words 
were added : " This monument was erected to 
Thomas Prior, Esquire, at the charge of seve- 
ral persons who contributed to honor the 
memory of that worthy patriot, to whom his 


own actions and unwearied endeavors in the 
service of his country have raised a monument 
more lasting than marble." 

In the summer of 1745 Prince Charles, the 
son of Chevalier de St. George, being equip- 
ped by Louis XV., landed in the western 
islands of Scotland, and King George being 
then absent in Hanover, and his British do- 
minions poorly prepared to resist a hostile 
invasion,«the Pretender created no little dis- 

We have only referred to the circumstance, 
however, to introduce a short extract from a 
letter of Bishop Berkeley's to Dean Gervais, 
which shows that the Emerald Isle, as well 
as Scotland and England, had its troublous 

" We have been alarmed with a report that 
a great body of rapparees is up in the county 
of Kilkenny ; these are looked on by some as 
the forerunners of an insurrection. In- oppo- 
sition to this our militia have been arrayed, 
that is, sworn — but, alas ! we want no oaths. 


we want muskets. I have bought up all I 
could get, and provided horses and arms for 
four and twenty of the Protestants of Cloyne, 
which, with a few more that can furnish them- 
selves, make up a troop of thirty horse. This 
seemed necessary to keep off rogues in these 
doubtful times." 

To save my young readers the trouble of 
looking out the definition of a long word, I 
will explain that a rapparee is a wild Irish 



Bishop Berkeley's letters to his friend Dr. Johnson — 
The Narraganset ponies give place to stage ooaohes — 
Prosperity of Yale, in 1749 — The uneducated people 
of Ireland — Hints in regard to a new college in 
America — Tar water correspondence — Effects of a 
good sermon — Dr. Johnson's two sons — Something 
about each of them — Mr. Hutchinson's theories — Con- 
cluding letter — Learning continuing to flourish at 
New Haven — A charitable wish from a Christian 

S every scrap of Bishop Berkeley's cor- 
respondence with his friends in America 
possesses great interest for us at this distance 
of time, I shall bring together in this chapter 
his letters to Dr. Johnson, from 1749 to 1751, 

And, by the way, some improvements have 
been going on in the colonies since the days 
when the Narraganset ponies were in such de- 
mand among the settlers about Newport, as 
we mentioned in a former chapter. 


In 1732, a stage coach route was established 
between Boston and New- York; not a very 
fast line, it is true, as it required fourteen 
days to go from one city to the other. The 
first coach was driven on this road in 1745 ; 
it belonged to an English woman, Lady Mur- 

Other changes had also taken place, but we 
have no room to enumerate them here. The 
first letter from Bishop Berkeley to his friend 
Johnson, which we shall copy, is dated 

" Olotnb, August 23d, 1749. 

"Rev. Sir: 

"I am obliged for the account you have 
sent me of the prosperous estate of learning 
in your college at New Haven. I approve of 
the regulations made there, and am particu- 
larly pleased to find your sons have made such 
a progress as appears from their elegant ad- 
dress to me in the Latin tongue. It must, in- 
deed, give me a very sensible satisfaction to 
hear that my weak endeavors have been of 
some use and service to that part of the world. 


I have two letters of yours at once on my 
hands to answer, for which business of various 
kinds must be my apology. As to the first, 
wherein you enclosed a small pamphlet rela- 
ting to tar water, I can only say, in behalf of 
those points in which the ingenious author 
seems to dififer from me, that I advance noth- 
ing which is not grounded on experience, as 
may be seen at .large in Mr. Prior's narra- 
tive of the effects of tar water, printed three 
or four years ago, and which may be supposed 
to have reached America. 

" For the rest, I am glad to find a spirit 
towards learning prevails in those parts, par- 
ticularly New-Tork, where you say a college 
is projected, which has my best wishes. At 
the same time, I am sorry that the condition 
of Ireland, containing such numbers of poor 
uneducated people, for whose sake charity 
schools are erecting throughout the kingdom, 
obligeth us to draw charities from England, 
so far are we from being able to extend our 
bounty to New-York, a country in proportion 



much richer than our own. But, as you are 
pleased to desire my advice upon this under- 
taking, I send the following hints, to be en- 
larged and improved by your own judgment : 

" I would not advise the applying to Eng" 
land for charters or statutes (which might 
cause great trouble, expense, and delay), but 
to do the business quietly within yourselves. 

"I believe it may suffice to begin with a 
president and two fellows. If they can pro- 
cure but three fit persons, I doubt not the 
college, from the smallest beginnings, would 
soon grow considerable. I should conceive 
good hopes were you at the head of it. Let 
them, by all means, supply themselves out of 
the seminaries in New England; for I am very 
apprehensive none can be got in Old England 
(who are willing to go) worth sending. 

" Let the Greek and Latin classics be well 
taught. Be this the first care, as to learning. 
But the principal care must be good life and 
morals, to which (as well as to study) early 
hours and temperate meals will much conduce. 


"If the terms for degrees are the same as 
at Oxford or Cambridge^ this would give credit 
to the college, and pave the way for admitting 
their graduates ad eundem in the English uni- 

« Small premiums in books, or distinctions 
in habit, may prove useful encouragements to 
the students. 

" I would advise that the building be regu- 
lar, plain, and cheap, and that each student 
have a small room (about ten feet square) to 

" I recommended this nascent seminary to 
an English bishop, to try what might be done 
there, but by his answer it seems the colony 
is judged rich enough to educate its own 

" Colleges, from small beginnings, grow 
great by subsequent bequests and benefac- 
tions. A small matter will suffice to set one 
agoing, and when this is once well done, there 
is no. doubt it will go on and thrive. The 
chief concern must be to set out in a good 


method, and introduce from the very first a 
good taste into the society. For this end its 
principal expense should be in making a hand- 
some provision for the president and fellows. 

" I have thrown together these few crude 
thoughts, for you to ruminate upon and digest 
in your judgment, and propose from yourself, 
as you see convenient. 

" My correspondence with patients that 
drink tar water obliges me to be less punc- 
tual in corresponding with my friends ; but I 
shall be always glad to hear from you. My 
sincere good wishes and prayers attend you in 
all your laudable undertakings. 

" I am your faithful humble servant, 
« G. Cloyne." 

On the 17th July, 1750, the bishop writes 
again : 

" Rev. Sir ; A few months ago I had an 
opportunity of writing to you and Mr. Honey- 
man, by an inhabitant of Rhode Island govern- 
ment. I would not, nevertheless, omit the 
present occasion of saluting you, and letting 


you know that it gave me great pleasure to 
hear from Mr. Bourk, a passenger from those 
parts, that a late sermon of yours, at New 
Haven, hath had a very good eflfect in recon- 
ciling several to the Church. I find, also, by 
a ietter from Mr. Clap, that learning con- 
tinues to make notable advances in your col- 
lege. This gives me great satisfaction ; and 
that God may bless your worthy endeavors, 
and crown them with success, is the sincere 
prayer of, " Rev. sir, 

" Your faithful brother and 

" Obedient servant, 

« G. Cloyne." 

« P. S. — I hope your ingenious sons are still 
an ornament to Yale College, and tread in 
their father's steps." 

Dr. Johnson had two sons. William grad- 
uated at Yale College in 1748 (two years 
before the bishop's last letter was written), 
and went to England in the autumn of 1755, 
with a view of returning after his ordination, 

to assist and succeed the Rev. Thomas Stan- 


dard, a superannuated missionary at West^ 
Chester. He had just received holy orders, 
and was about to set sail for America, when he 
was seized with small-pox, and died on the 
20th of June, 1756. It was a terrible blow 
to his afflicted father. • 

William Samuel (Mr. Johnson's other son) 
has found a place in the history of his coun- 
try. He had been a student at Yale and 
Harvard, and succeeded, in 1787, to the place 
once occupied by his honored father, as the 
President of King's (Columbia) College, 
New- York. He was at this time fifty years 
of age, and had been a delegate to the Con- 
gress of 1765, at New York, and agent of 
Connecticut in England, where he formed the 
acquaintance of such men as Seeker, Berke- 
ley, Lowth, and others, including the levia- 
than Dr. Samuel Johnson, who became his 
correspondent on his return to America. He 
was a fellow of the Royal Society, and had 
the degree of doctor of divinity from Oxford. 
Among other honors and offices, he was dele- 


gate to the Convention of the Constitution of 
the United States, and exercised an important 
influence in its deliberations. While Con- 
gress sat in New- York, he represented his 
native State in that body, assisting with BUs- 
WQf th in the formation of the judiciary, and 
on its removal to Philadelphia, resigned his 
senatorship, and occupied himself exclusively 
with the government of the college till his 
withdrawal, in 1800, from the infirmities of 
years. He died in Stratford, in 1819, at the 
age of ninety-two. Verplanck has applied 
to his retirement the lines of Dr. Johnson : 

The virtues of a temperate prime 

Bless with an age exempt from scorn or crime ; 
-tt.n age that melts with unperceived decay. 

And glides in pious innocence away ; 
Whose peaceful day benevolence endears, 

Whose night congratulating conscience cheers. 
The general fav'rite as the general friend, 

Such age there is, and who shall wish its end ?• 

• " Duyckink's Cyclopaedia of American Literature," 
vol. 1, p. 382. 

See also Sparks' edition of Dr. Franklin's works, 
vol. vii, p. 376, etc. 


About the year 1745, Dr. JohnBon, in the 
" course of his philosophical studies, was led to 
procure the works of the celebrated John 
Hutchinson, which had for some years excited 
great attention among the learned. The re- 
sult of his examination of these works wa» a 
full conviction that, while they were in many 
respects obnoxious to criticism, they had real- 
ly weakened the principles of the Newtonian 
philosophy; and, in regard to divinity, had 
brought to light some very important ancient 
truths, that had been in a measure lost ; and 
had proved that the whole method of our 
redemption was much more clearly revealed 
to our first parents, and much better under- 
stood in the patriarchal and Mosaic ages than 
has generally been supposed. In these opinions 
he was confirmed by subsequent investigations. 

Dr. Johnson being much interested in these 
investigations, he alludes to them jn writing 
to Bishop Berkeley. This accounts for the 
reference to Mr. Hutchinson's writing, in the 
next and closing letter : 


"Rev. Sir: I would not let Mr. Hall depart 
without a line from me in acknowledgment of 
your letter, which he put into my hands. As 
for Mr. Hutchinson's writings, I am not ac- 
quainted with them. I live in a remote cor- 
ner, where many modern things escape me. 
Only this I can say, that I have observed that 
author to be mentioned as au enthusiast, 
which gave me no prepossession in his favor. 
I am glad to find, by Mr. Clap's letter, and 
the specimens of literature enclosed in his 
packet, that learning continues to make a pro- 
gress in Yale College, and hope that virtue 
and Christian charity may keep pace with it. 

" The letters which you and Mr. Clap say 
you had written in answer to my last, never 
came to my hands. I am glad to hear, by 
Mr. Hall, of the good health and condition 
of yourself and family. . I pray God to bless 
you and yours, and prosper your good endea- 
vors. " I am. Rev. sir, 

" Your faithful friend and humble servant, 
" Olotitb, Ji»/y 26, 1751." "G CloYNB. 



The virtues of tar water fail — Dr. Berkeley's disinte- 
rested proposal — One of the good things that King 
George said — Why Oxford "was chosen as a futore 
home— Leaver taking and last acts of kindness — Weari- 
some journey in a horse-litter — Befitting welcome to 
a good and great man — A sudden summons — Funeral 
— Monument and inscription — Criticism on the bish- 
op's writings— His family— Conclusion. 

^VEN the virtues of the famous tar water 
"^^ ceased, at last, to be of any service in 
alleyiating the bodily infirmities of Bishop 
Berkeley, and in 1751, his health became so 
seriously impaired, that he was nearly dis- 
abled for the performance of active duty. 
He was now sixty-height, a period of life 
when man's working days are well nigh over. 
The good bishop could not think of remaining 
in his diocese doing nothing, and still less did 
he feel disposed to draw the emoluments of 
his office, and expend them elsewhere, in the 


pursuit of rest and comfort. He therefore 
looked about him for some quiet nook, where 
the evening of life might be passed in the 
uninterrupted preparation for a better. 

London, on some accounts, would hare pre- 
sented peculiar attractions for him, but when 
he remembered the changes which death had 
been making in the circle of old and valued 
friends, he banished the thought of returning 
there. He was the last survivor of the great 
men who had rendered the reign of Queen 
Anne so illustrious. 

The remains of Addison had long been 
reposing among the illustrious dead in West- 
minster Abbey, and Bolingbroke had just 
died, leaving him the last on the list. The 
old man, accordingly, determined to spend his 
remaining days at Oxford. Besides its other 
advantages, he could there superintend the 
education of one of his sons, who had recent- 
ly been admitted a student of Christ Church. 
The bishop having thus settled upon his 
place of abode, he offered to exchange his 


bishopric for the humbler office of canon* at 
Oxford. Not succeeding in this, he had re- 
course to an expedient which few persons 
beside himself would have been disinterested 
enough to adopt. He wrote to the Secretary 
of State, asking permission to resign his office, 
worth at least .£1,400 per annum. 

So uncommon a petition excited his Majes- 
ty's curiosity to inquire who was the extraor- 
dinary man that preferred it. Being told 
that it was his old acquaintance. Dr. Berke- 
ley, he declared that he should die a bishop 
in spite of himself, but gave him full liberty 
to reside where he pleased. We are able to 
record so little that is good which George the 
Second ever did or said, that we are glad to 
have the opportunity of setting this down to 
his credit. 

In July, 1752, Bishop Berkeley left Cloyne, 
in company with his wife and eldest son (the 

* A canon is the name of an officer in a cathedraL 
For ftiU explanation see ''Hook's Church Dictionary," 
p. 145. 


one for whose benefit he had chosen Oxford as 
his home), and was followed far by mourning 
crowds, who had learned to love him. His 
last episcopal act was to sign a lease of the 
demesne lands in the neighborhood of his 
palace, to be renewed yearly at the rent of 
j£200, which sum he directed to be distributed 
among the poor of Cloyne, Youghal, and 
Aghadda. And, while speaking of this act 
of kindness, we are reminded of another. 
Cloyne, though it gave name to the diocese, 
was in fact no better than a village, the 
inhabitants of which had never been distin- 
guished for industry or ingenuity. To encour- 
age them to be more thoughtful for their 
temporal interests, the bishop had long made 
it a rule to have all his clothes manufactured 
there ; and he preferred to wear those of in- 
ferior quality, rather than suffer the poor of 
the town to remain unemployed. The jour- 
ney from Cloyne to Oxford must have been 
wearisome to the invalid; indeed, he was 
obliged to be carried in a horse-litter, all the 



way from his landing in England, until he 
reached his destination. At Oxford, Bishop 
Berkeley was welcomed as befitted his emi- 
nence. But at this time there were few at 
that great university who could appreciate 
his intellectual height. The Oxford of 1752 
was a very different place from that Oxford 
which, during the last twenty years, has been 
80 full of mental life, and which has. had so 
marked an influence on English thought. The 
stately colleges, and the hierarchy of author- 
ity were there, but the energy of intellect 
was almost wanting. Oxford had become 
divorced from the nation, and identified more 
or less with the Jacobite faction ; and accord- 
ingly, in her fellows and heads of houses, 
she generally reared only bigoted pedants — 
in her students. Parson Adamses and Squire 
Westerns. Ten years before, Adam Smith 
had been there, and had formed an idea of 
the place, that however unfavorable was per- 
fectly just. At this time, indeed, if we ex- 
cept Lowth, Warton, and Blackstone,, we 


cannot call to mind a single Oxford M. A., in 
early manhood, whose future eminence was 
at all to be ascribed to university influ- 

When Berkeley came to reside at Christ 
Church, the only intellect at Oxford that was 
at all of equal power with his own, was that 
of a sickly boy, who, already full of theology 
and history, had recently been matriculated 
at Magdalen, and was destined to write the 
Decline and Fall of the Empire of Rome. 

The bishop's residence beside the Isis was 
only for a brief space. On Sunday evening, 
January 14th, 1753, he was reclining on a 
couch, listening to his wife, who was reading 
aloud for the benefit of the family. She had 
finished St. Paul's glorious discourse upon the 
resurrection (1 Cor., xv.), and was beginning 
a sermon of Bishop Sherlock's, on a kindred 
subject, when the final messenger came to the 
aged prelate, in solemn silence, and with no 
note of warning. Few, perhaps, were ever 
better prepared to meet that " sudden death" 


which we seek to avert by our anxious 

The bishop's funeral was attended by all 
the dignitaries of Christ Church, but would, 
we think, have presented a more touching 
pageant, had it been followed by the simple 
mourners who would have flocked to it at 
Cloyne. And yet he rests becomingly within 
the University of Hooker and Butler. In 
that stately pile of Wolsey, which, among 
crowds of forgotten names, has reared for 
England ten generations of eminent men, a 
plain tablet tells the passer by that « If he be 
a Christian and a patriot, he may be glad that 
Berkeley lived." Not far off, in marble life, 
are the keen and careworn features of his an- 
tagonist, Locke. His portrait, by his wife, 
taken at « the prime of manhood, when youth 
ends," and representing delicate Greek fea- 
tures, animated by dark eyes in lustrous calm, 
adorns the examination hall of the University 
of Dublin. 

The inscription on Bishop Berkeley's monu- 


ment was drawn up by Dr. Markham, Arch- 
bishop of York, then head master of West- 
minster school, and is in these terms : 










Obht Annum Aoens Septuaoesimum Tebtixtm : 

Natus Anno CHRisn, MDCLXXIX. 



"It is remarkable,'* says Mr. Tuckerman, 

in his able Essays, "that Berkeley's mind, 

though so visionary in speculation, was keenly 

observant and exact. When the « Minute 

Philosopher' was republished in this country, 

it excited unusual attention, and was esteemed 


an excellent argument against irreligion, 
though somewhat too elaborate and dry for 
prolonged popularity. A marked resem- 
blance has been traced between parts of this 
work and Butler^s Analogy. 

"Beside his metaphysical writings, a mathe- 
matical treatise in Latin, a number of con- 
troversial tracts, occasional sermons, and a 
few of his letters, admit us still further into 
a knowledge of his opinions and disposition. 
In every instance these casual efforts are 
inspired by an enthusiasm, for truth, which, 
he quaintly says, * is the cry of all, but the 
game of few,' or by a desire to enlighten and 
benefit others. 

« The titles of these writings indicate their 
purpose: «A Discourse of an Infidel Math^ 
matician ;' another to ^ Magistrates, on Irre- 
ligious Living ;' <A Word to the Wise,' where- 
in he successfully sought to pacify the Roman 
Catholic clergy of Ireland, and promote more 
liberal feelings toward them ; « The Querist,' 
in which many useful and benevolent sugges- 


tions are offered for the public welfare, and 
several original hints are given worthy of a 
political economist, before the science had 
attained its present consideration ; <A Pro- 
posal for Better Supplying Churches in our 
Foreign Plantations.' 

« Every one has read the pensive descrip- 
tion of the old South Sea house in London, in 
which Lamb reveals in mellow tints its moni- 
tory decay. When the distress incident to 
the failure of that splendid scheme was rife, 
Berkeley improved the occasion to offer sug- 
gestions, both of warning and counsel, worthy 
of his sagacious mind and benevolent heart. 
As a writer he was thus of great immediate 
utility, especially as the affectionate esteem in 
which he was held gave sanction to his 

" When we examine his literary remains, 
however, with the more concise and varied 
forms of didactic writing brought into vogue 
during the last half century fresh in our 
minds, there appears a want of life and bril- 


liancy in his most sensible remarks. His 
style, however deserving of eulogy as a 
medium for abstract discussion, is somewhat 
monotonous and diffuse, more that of a schol- 
arly sermonizer than of a modern essayist. 
And yet it is impossible to recur to his candid 
and ingenious writings, in which an intrepid 
love of truth and a liberal grace of character 
seem to breathe from the unexaggerated, clear, 
and tranquil diction, without feeling a certain 
admiration of the author, springing from love 
for the man, more than from sympathy with 
the philosopher, ffis extensive knowledge 
and catholic tastes are apparent, even in the 
advocacy of his special opinions, and the 
genial light of a humane, bold, and compre- 
hensive mind, gives a charm to ideas that 
often have no present importance, and to 
objects for some of which it is no longer 
needful to plead.'' 

Bishop Berkeley was the father of four 
children, one of whom, as we stated before, 
lies buried in Newport. His son George was 


a distinguished clergyman. He was born 
September 28 (0. S.), 1733, in London, but 
in his infancy was removed with the family to 
Ireland, where he was instructed in the clas- 
sics by his father. At the age of nineteen he 
was sent to Christ -Church College, Oxford, 
where, in due time, he took the degree of 
Bachelor of Arts, and for a while held the 
oflSce of collector in the university. In 1758 
he took a small living, the Vicarage of East 
Garston, Berks, from which he was removed, 
in 1759, by Archbishop Seeker, to the Vicar- 
age of Bray, Berks ; and subsequently the 
archbishop gave him the Chancellorship of 
Brecknock, the Rectory of Acton, Middlesex, 
and the sixth prebendal stall in the church 
of Canterbury. He took the degree of Mas- 
ter of Arts in 1759, and that of Doctor of 
Laws in 1768. The Vicarage of Bray he ex- 
changed for that of Cookham, near Maiden- 
head, and had afterward, from the church of 
Canterbury, the Vicarage of East Peckham, 
Kent He relinquished it on obtaining the 


Rectory of St, Clement's, Danes. This, with 
the Vicarage of Tyshurst, Sussex (to which he 
was presented by the church of Canterbury, 
in 1792, when he vacated Cookham), and with 
the Chancellorship of Brecknock, he held till 
his death. After a lingering and painful ill- 
ness, he died on the 6th of January, 1795, and 
was interred in his father's vault in Christ 
Church, Oxford. 

In 1761 he was married to Eliza, eldest 
daughter of the Rev. Henry Finsham, by 
whom he had four children. She died on the 
first of November, 1800. He was an accom- 
plished gentleman, an elegant scholar, and a 
respectable divine, and was especially distin- 
guished for a spirit of active philanthropy. 
He published a sermon preached on the anni- 
versary of King Charles' martyrdom, 1785 ; 
one on Good Friday, 1787 ; one at Cookham, 
on the king's accession, 1789. His sermon on 
the consecration of Bishop Home, who was 
his intimate friend, was published after his 

PBOPESSOB butler's EULOGY. " 299 

In 1799 his widow published a volume of 
his sermons, with a biographical preface. 

We cannot better end our account of the 
life of the Bishop of Cloyne, than in Professor 
Butler's glowing words. 

" We have written of Berkeley as an Irish- 
man, but we feel that such a man belongs not 
to Ireland but to human nature ; and never did 
the panegyric of epitaph lay by its customary 
pomp of falsehood more sincerely, than when 
it called upon every lover of religion and of 
his country to rejoice that such a man has 
lived. So much for his earthly career ; the 
rest is hidden from our feeble eyes. But if 
we must leave the Christian, the philosopher, 
the patriot, at the moment when all human 
biography must resign its task, we may well 
believe that his subsequent life is taken up by 
the pen of angelic recorders." 


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